Stories of Change
Rosalie François with her two new sheep.
“Thank you very much for this beautiful program.”
Many families in Haiti earn a living by raising livestock. People breed animals such as sheep, goats or pigs and then sell the offspring. In recent years, though, disasters have struck the nation and claimed the lives of many families’ animals. Families may also have to sell their livestock as a last resort to meet urgent needs, ending this sustainable income stream.
In 2020, CWS distributed sheep to many Haitian families to help them start or restart raising livestock. Here’s what a few program participants had to say:
“My name is Rosalie François. I am married to Iliado and am a mother of three daughters and three sons. Two nephews and my father are also living with me. My father is blind. I am a merchant, a farmer and I do animal breeding. I used to have a cow, two sheep and three goats, which were very helpful for me, but due to circumstances I had to sell them so that I could solve some problems, purchase food and send my children to school.
During the [CWS-supported] training…I learned to build a shelter for the sheep, to regularly clean the shelter, and to collect excrements and leftover food to produce compost. That is what I do now and then I will use it for my crops. I know that I should not build the shelter on a steep hill, so that the animals are comfortable in the shelter. I apply what I learned at the training. My shelter was built well and water cannot cause the animals any problems.
I will respect the contract I signed and reimburse the firstborn lambs to the leaders so that they can distribute them to other people who haven’t received any yet. Thank you very much for this beautiful program.”
“I am 43 years old and married to Junel. We have four daughters and one son. I am a farmer, I have a small business and also some animals. I used to have four goats, two donkeys and four sheep, but right now I do not have any animals at all. This animal breeding program of MOSODEL and CWS has a major importance in the community. Many people who had no sheep, now received two ewes. If they take good care of them, they will have lambs, they will reimburse some and the rest will be theirs to keep.
I already took my sheep for mating and now it is pregnant. Before I received the sheep, I gathered materials and built a shelter for the sheep, because I learned during the training that a shelter is a protection for animals. It protects them against wind, sun, rain, and other animals that can attack them.
When my sheep will have lambs, I will reimburse the firstborn lamb to the leaders of MOSODEL, so that they can pass them on to people who have not yet received any sheep. I give many thanks for these sheep that I received.”
“Watnie Atilus is my name. I am 26 years old, I have two daughters and I am married to Louis Jean Baptiste. I am a merchant and practice animal breeding. This program and AGEHPMDNG have a lot of importance for me. If I was not a part of this group, I would not receive any sheep.
I already received two female sheep and I benefited from many advices during a training that I attended for two days. At that training I learned to keep an eye on the sheep so that I can take them to mate when the time is right. I also know that I should not let the sheep roam around freely, because then they can get lost, thieves can catch them, or they can die. I tie them with a rope at a place where they can find fodder to eat. In the afternoon, I put them in a shelter that I built for them before I received the sheep.
I feel proud when I look at my sheep, I am very happy. I hope that everyone keeps their promise to reimburse the firstborn lambs so that the program can continue to advance. I give thanks to all those who have contributed to this program in one way or another.”
“My name is Alène Desir. I am 51 years old and have one daughter. I am not married. I live with my mother and take care of her. I am a merchant, a farmer and I do animal breeding. I have three goats, one pig and 21 chickens.
During the training I learned there are three ways people look after animals in Haiti. There are people who choose free roaming of animals, others tie them with a rope, and others put them in a shelter. I learned about the importance each method has and also the disadvantages. Now, I have chosen to apply the rope method, because during the day I tie my animals close to grasses and in the afternoon I go get them to put them in a shelter and feed them again for the night.
Often it is a problem to find fodder for animals in the community because of drought. I learned at the training that when it rains a lot of grasses grow and I can cut them to dry them in the sun and tie them together to make hay. Then when I feed the hay to the animals, I can water it with some water with salt. I have already started to produce hay to give to the animals when the next dry season arrives.
I built the shelter before I received the sheep. I feel comfortable when I look after the sheep and I also believe that the sheep themselves are comfortable when they can be in the shelter without any problems. That makes me happy.
This program helps me a lot, especially when the sheep will start tot have lambs. They reproduce quickly so I can sell them to solve any problems I have, for example with my house or to feed the children. I hope that the program will continue so that people who haven’t received any animals can also have them, while I will give my own contribution when I reimburse the firstborn lambs. Thank you very much.”
“These sheep that I received are my future.”
Thanks to Latter-day Saint Charities for their support of this program.