Haiti Ekokay

EKOKAY - A sustainable reconstruction

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Chapter 1

What does home mean

The house is not sleeping in the street. A place to rest. A place to feel safe. It's a kitchen, some bedrooms, a bathroom. It is the family, its own language, its own people. "Home" can mean so many things. And, in Haiti, after the 2010 earthquake, none of this remained for many. Almost ten years later, that's what Haitians think when they talk about their "kay".


Haiti is the first nation born of a slave revolution and was the first black republic in the world. It conquered independence from France, of which it was a colony, in 1804. Occupied from 1915 to 1934 by the United States, it has always been characterized by a strong political instability.


Haiti is located in the Caribbean Sea and shares the island of Hispaniola with the Dominican Republic. At about 100 km from Cuba and less than two hours flight from Miami, it is a predominantly mountainous country and its name means "land from the high mountains". It has an area of 27 750 km2 and a good 1770 km of coasts.


The country has exceeded 11 million inhabitants and is the most densely populated of the Caribbean states: with 408 inhabitants / km2 it is close to the level of India (416 inhabitants / km2). Over 60% of the population lives in urban areas. The average age is 23 years and the life expectancy is 63, compared to 73 in the neighboring Santo Domingo.


Per capita GDP is $ 860 per year (2018 data). In the UN Human Development Index (HDI), Haiti ranks 163rd out of 188 states (2016 figure). Over 6 million Haitians live on less than $ 2.40 a day and more than 2.5 million live in extreme poverty with only $ 1.23 a day.

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