Just Hope Partners with Haitian Entrepreneurs to Create Jobs and Rebuild Communities
August 21, 2017
Close to one year after Hurricane Matthew killed more than 800 people and destroyed communities in Haiti, the unemployment rate sits at 85% in the city of Jeremie.
With countless businesses wiped out and employment options severely limited, many enterprising local entrepreneurs are taking matters into their own hands, and Just Hope is providing a “hand up” through a holistic approach to business development.
Just Hope Launches Entrepreneurship Development Program
Just Hope International has launched an entrepreneurship development program in Jeremie, Haiti with the goal of reviving the local economy by identifying and training local entrepreneurs with the personal drive and skills to build a successful business.
This program is creating a lasting impact by providing the opportunity for each participant to analyze ways they can develop personally and contribute to their communities, while developing their business. Additionally, the program will include a business apprentice program that will train and employ youth that have aged out of local orphanages.
40 entrepreneurs submitted applications to the program, and 23 were selected to receive capital investments based on personal interviews and review of their business plan. Many of the entrepreneurs are recent graduates, while others are seeking to rebuild businesses they lost in Hurricane Matthew.
A fund of $15,400 has been distributed among the entrepreneurs (18 male, 7 female) in the form of $300 to $1,500 individual assistance, based on the business plans they submitted.
Entrepreneurs Create Jobs and Fuel Economic Development in Haiti
The entrepreneurs will create 60 new jobs and generate a combined total of $61,000 in annual revenue.
The selected business plans include a wide variety of ventures, including everything from peanut butter production, soap making and goat farming, to a cut flower nursery, building material supply store, and English language training.
Each participant proposed his or her terms of the capital investments received, which are an average of 12-15% per year and payable over 4-17 months with no collateral or personal guarantees required. As the entrepreneurs repay their capital investments, the money will be reinvested in Jeremie and neighboring towns under a similar program.
Successful Businesses Build Healthier Families
The success of their businesses will strengthen the culture of entrepreneurship and enable the men and women involved to provide for their families, send their children to school, obtain better healthcare and further grow their businesses and create more jobs.
By economically empowering entrepreneurs, Just Hope aims to equip people to provide for themselves and rebuild their communities together.