BBBC Haiti Housing Director Announces Home Ownership Option

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti – The Building Back Better Communities Director for the Exemplar Community Development (ECD) Foundation announced on Thursday hopes that ownership options for residents to own their home and property are being developed.

A point of criticism for the Interim Haiti Recovery Commission (IHRC), BBBC housing plan was ownership, which is at the root of developing a community and its local economy.

The Director of the Exemplar Community Development Foundation, Maryse Pénette-Kedar revealed to DH that options r ownership as part of the foundation’s goal for long term viability in Haiti.

„This means ownership options for residents and leveraging investments for maximum job creation and local business development.”

On the board for the Exemplar Community Development Foundation is a member from the Deutsche Bank who is developing a micro-mortgage mechanism to support home ownership for Haitians of all income levels.

The bank has also requested the services of Stewart Title Company, one of the largest U.S. title companies with experience in the Caribbean and Latin America.

Other members on the board of the ECD are from Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and have done substantial on-site research and community consultation in order to develop a self-sustaining community. This research included investigating the water table, post earthquake migration patterns and natural disaster susceptibility.

Keeping them honest, Defend Haiti contacted Economist Jeffrey Sachs for his opinion on the sustainability of the project. His office returned a response to us, saying that, the project „looks to be vitally important in the short term.”

The Director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University, Sachs said Haiti needs „a successful long-term response to this crisis we have to view it in terms of long-term development.” In regards to the ECD program, management of the communities is key. „Things like inadequate access to health, education, poor infrastructure, and lack of business development which when fostered can lead to strengthening of markets,” the communication concluded.

Maryse told DH that her „hope is that all housing in Haiti is built according to the standards of ownership, sustainability and [with an] economic impact.” The Exemplar Foundation has set this as their model.

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