Since 2010, we have invested in an agro-forestry program in Haiti that has created self-sustaining tree nurseries to support local farmers and communities. Haiti is one of the world’s most severely deforested countries with an estimated 1.5% tree cover. In contrast, Haiti’s neighbor, the Dominican Republic, has 48%tree cover, while U.S. cities have an average of 27% tree cover.
Haiti’s deforestation is driven by many factors, including dependency on wood for cooking charcoal, rapid population growth and unreliable agricultural practices. These factors contribute to the severity of food insecurity, flooding and erosion. With our largest employee population located in our manufacturing facility in the Dominican Republic, Haiti’s neighboring country, we are concerned for the well-being of the whole island.
In 2010, Timberland partnered with Timoté Georges and Hugh Locke, co-founders of the Smallholder Farmers Alliance (SFA), to develop a sustainable agro-forestry business model run by local smallholder farmers that would be self-financed within five years. The farmers voluntarily tend to a network of tree nurseries that annually produce one million trees. In return, the farmers receive training, crop seeds, trees and tools that collectively help restore tree cover and increase crop yields.
· A thriving cooperative with 3,200 Haitian farmer members
· Five million trees planted, increased production of cash crops
· A proven sustainable economic development model that can be replicated elsewhere
LEARN MORE by watching the trailer for KOMBIT: The Cooperative, our documentary film about our work in Haiti