Although almost half of all Haitians make a living in the agricultural and livestock sector, there are no veterinary schools in Haiti, leaving the health and welfare of the nation’s 1.5 million head of cattle, goats, and pigs in the hands of a few veterinarians who have been trained abroad. Moreover, a lack of access to veterinary care limits the productivity of livestock, further reducing farmers’ ability to become financially independent.
At Herd Heroes, we believe that training Haitian animal health workers is critical to improving the productivity of animal agriculture. Our mission is to help farmers towards earning an income that uses their existing skill set and relies on available resources, rather than providing handouts that undermine the local economy. With this in mind, we have adopted a two-pronged approach that is already yielding impressive results:
(1) improve the health and productivity of livestock through improved genetics and veterinary care delivered by Community Animal Health Workers trained and funded by Herd Heroes.
(2) negotiate contracts between school nutrition programs and rural farmers to supply locally-sourced goat meat for students' lunches.
Our aim is to create and foster an economic cycle driven by increased production and increased demand to allow Haitian farmers to become financially independent and less reliant on charitable organizations.