Dear Just Haiti Friends,
Kim recently had the opportunity to visit a migrant shelter on the Mexico-Guatemala border, where we learned a lot about what is happening with migration out of Haiti.
If you follow the news, you know the situation is desperate, with random violence, gang activity, and kidnappings, and inflation is reported to be around 20%.
The shelter in Mexico held a large contingent of Haitians, and staff informed us that the numbers are consistently large. Even some of the signs were in Spanish and Kreyol. We learned that Haitians cross the Caribbean to Colombia, where they disembark and travel north by land, crossing through Guatemala into Mexico.
At the shelter in Mexico they wait to get papers to travel north, hoping to cross the border into the US. We also know that the shelters on the US-Mexico border are full of Haitians, hoping for their chance to enter the US.
We also learned that the border crossing between Colombia and Panama is a treacherous and lawless territory, and that Haitians are often forced to carry drugs as payment for crossing. There are stories of violence, sexual assault, and murder.
Why are we sharing this with you?
The hopelessness that is the current situation in Haiti is driving the migration. Although we are small, we are a lifeline for the families and communities Just Haiti works with, providing a regular and fair income for their coffee.
The coffee growers that work with us, while still struggling in a very tough environment, are earning enough money to support their families.
Just Haiti's work prevents the hopelessness and desperation that leads to migration. We truly wish we could expand faster and impact more people.
Like all businesses, we depend on you, our customers. We appreciate your support and especially your coffee purchases!
The Just Haiti Team