Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Intro to Cash-for-Work


(Photos: A cash-for-work team clearing a clinic in Port-au-Prince of rubble.)

Hello Everyone!

The idea of Cash for Work has been around for quite some time with programs all over the world. At the most basic level it is designed to provide cash in exchange for various types of work.

Our Cash for Work teams in Haiti are doing everything from basic camp clean up to working in the neighborhoods surrounding our camps on rubble removal. The benefits of Cash for Work include the most obvious – instant cash in the hands of those that need it most – but almost as important is the pride that comes from being able to provide for your family, even if for a very short period of time as well as giving Haitians a bigger sense of ownership in the reconstruction process.

The unemployment rates were grim before the earthquake with more than two-thirds of the labor force not having formal jobs so of course with so many businesses lying in ruins the numbers are even more difficult.

The good news is that we are currently able to provide Cash for Work at four camps in Haiti with funding lasting a few more months. We’ve worked with the nuances of each camp to design Cash for Work programs that work for the people living there. For instance, in our two camps outside Port au Prince, we rotate through new teams of workers and pay more frequently because jobs are even harder to come by than in the city.

Another example is the size of our teams. In the center of Port au Prince at Terrain Acra camp we have teams of less than 10 so they can work in small alleyways, nooks and crannies to remove rubble and carry it out to streets that can accommodate dump trucks. Those teams are concentrating on clearing rubble from public spaces like streets, schools and clinics. The team in the photo here are clearing a clinic. They are anxious to get back into their neighborhoods and are working hard to make it happen. We’re fast at work looking for funding to continue to enable their efforts.

1 comment:

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