In a small town called Bas Andre outside of Gonaives, Haiti, lives 22-year-old Duracier. She’s lively and hopeful for her future. However, growing up in Bas Andre has led her to a life most 22 year olds would never dream of.
In March, temperatures peak at about 90 degrees in the small mountainous region, and the sun is unforgiving. That doesn’t stop Duracier from accomplishing her goals, though. On one afternoon, she walked a few miles from her house to attend her first community farming group class with the hopes of learning traditional techniques to improve her new garden.
The community farming group is led by Telson, an agronomist hired by Rise Against Hunger, who teaches a traditional farming technique class once a week to adults in Bas Andre. This particular class had around 50 attendees, 10 of which were female. Duracier was the youngest woman to attend the class.
“I live with my mother, but I stopped going to school at an early age because my mother could not afford it,” said Duracier. “I have a garden and I’m eager to know more about what to do.”
Most of the women who attended brought their children to the class, or showed up a few minutes late. Seeing the women trickle in made it clear that it doesn’t matter when they showed up — what matters is the drive for a better life that inspired them to make time for the class, regardless of how late they were or if they had to bring their children.
Duracier’s dream is to attend school to become a nurse, and learning to farm is just a step along the way. Her goal is to make money from the plants to support not only herself, but also her mother. So far, she is growing corn, rice, beans and spring onions.
She shares, “The class was very helpful. I’ve learned that if you have a plant it can die, but I’m inspired to learn how to take care of them — like I will one day take care of people when I become a nurse.”
Providing access to new techniques in a saturated market gives women like Duracier the opportunity to generate and sell more competitive produce at their local markets. Learning proper farming techniques will lead Duracier to the life she’s dreamed of as a nurse!
To make a difference in the lives of women like Duracier, join the movement to end hunger and donate today!