We need your help!

We need your help!

Roots of Development needs your help raising funds for three important projects

Please donate today

We need your help raising funds for three important,
upcoming projects before the year ends!

About 85% of our funding comes from individuals like you. In order to do the impactful work we do year in and year out, we rely on your support. Please help us raise the funds needed to implement three key projects before the year ends. Learn more about each one of these projects below and make your contribution today!

Our Featured Projects

PROJECT #1: Recycling on La Gonave

Litter lining La Gonave's coast

One of La Gonave’s greatest assets is its beauty. Tourism has the potential to be a major source of revenue and employment for the island. However, plastics and other trash have started lining the coastlines of the island and filling towns and cities. There has been no program, private or public, to collect and remove trash. Until now!

Roots of Development is partnering up with Environmental Cleaning Solutions S.A. (ECSSA), a private Haitian company that has been collecting trash and recyclable goods throughtout Haiti for over 8 years.

We will be helping ECSSA find four collection site managers, introduce them to the island’s local authorities, help spread the word amongst the general public about the new recycling services (and employment opportunity/s), and provide ECSSA with some on-the-ground oversight. 

Process of transforming collected trash

Learn more about this project and make your donation here!

Donate Here

PROJECT #2: Community Project Fund

Community-Led Initiatives


In order to provide encouragement and support to the numerous local leaders and dynamic community groups carrying out exciting community-led projects all across the island, we need to develop a fund that can support those projects and continue improving quality of life on the island. 

Over the years, we have developed good relationships with leaders and community groups from across the island, through their participation in formal workshops and trainings and informal gatherings. We have worked hard to help them strengthen their organizational management capacity, by providing them with access to important workshops and experienced facilitators.

Planning a community-led development project with a partner


To help these leaders and community groups bring these skills and trainings from the theoretical to the practical, we want to be able to provide them with financial support for projects they are already carrying out in their communities or hope to carry out in the near future. These projects represent their greatest priorities and address their greatest development challenges.

We hope to be able to raise enough money to fund the projects of a couple of model community groups each year to help them further strengthen their organizational capacity and improve the quality of life in their community.

A community-led development project in action
To learn more about this project and make a donation to the fund click here!

Donate Here

PROJECT #3: Annual Workshops to Build Local Capacity

Local leaders meeting to learn about development management and capacity building

It is crucial that we continue providing local leaders and community-based organizations with opportunities to strengthen their organizational management capacity. For development efforts and investments to truly be sustainable, they need to be owned and led by the community, but that community must have the opportunity to reinforce its strengths and strengthen its weaknesses.

“A project is only as strong as the community managing it.”

Help us provide four professional workshops each year to leaders from all parts of La Gonave, to learn skills needed to better manage development on the island: financial management, program management, business development, and leadership.
Local leaders involved in the workshops

Each of these workshops are multi-day and led by professional Haitian facilitators experienced in organizational management skills, leadership, and community development. The subjects and skills taught during the workshops address the greatest needs and priorities of our local partners, as identified by them. We have been carrying out these workshops for years, but decided to scale them up to include leaders from across the island in March 2018, with our partner institution CLE (Centre Haitien du Leadership et de l’Excellence).

Please help us provide these important workshops to the leaders of La Gonave by
making a contribution today  

Donate Here!

Roots of Development is a 501c3 organization that is audited annually by an independent CPA.

Updates from Roots of Development

Roots of Development

Exciting updates from our recent trip to Haiti, including a partnership to restore the beauty of La Gonâve…

We are excited to announce we are going to be helping Environmental Cleaning Solutions S.A. (ECSSA) set up four recycling (collection) centers on the island of La Gonâve to begin cleaning up the towns and the coastline, so La Gonâve can get back to its original beauty. Materials like bottles, styrofoam and plastics cover the coastline of La Gonâve. Most of these goods are not even produced by residents of La Gonâve, but are carried over by the sea from mainland Haiti. Currently, the island has no trash collection services and residents have almost no way of of recycling plastics.

Coastline of La Gonave littered with trash

The collection centers will pay residents (per lb.) for the recyclable goods they collect and bring to the center. The centers will be run by Haitian entrepreneurs and create economic opportunities for many living on the island. Once a large enough quantity has accumulated amongst the collection sites, ECSSA will then come with boats to collect the goods and bring them back to their main collection site in Port-au-Prince, where they will then be transformed and/or packed up to be sold to buyers overseas.

Recycling and transformation at ECSAA's central collection site

Our partnership with ECSSA developed out of our ongoing goal to promote La Gonâve and get more organizations and businesses involved and active on the island. It aligns with our mission to improve quality of life on the island and support development initiaties that can be managed and led by local residents.

Be sure you follow Roots of Development on Facebook to be kept up-to-date on this and other exciting opportunities now happening on La GonâveConnect with us here.

Introduction to La Gonâve, Haiti

Unique shots from around La Gonave, Haiti

For over ten years, Roots of Development has focused its efforts almost exclusively on the island of La Gonâve, Haiti.

La Gonâve is Haiti’s largest island. In fact, La Gonâve is the largest of Hispaniola’s satellite islands. It is located to the west-northwest of Port-au-Prince, in the Gulf of Gonâve, and is part of Haiti’s Ouest Department. It is home to approximately 100,000 residents, which is a larger population than the majority of the territories and nations that make up the Caribbean. The indigenous Taínos called the island Guanabo.


The unique beauty of La Gonave

The island faces huge challenges, a major lack of infrastructure, a weak private sector, and very little attention from the national government, but it also has huge potential. It is a beautiful island, located in a strategic location, with picturesque coasts and acres of farmland. It has a large population, which represents a large, untapped market for goods and services, and it faces very few security concerns. The island is home to a group of strong local elected officials and an active civil society.

To learn more about La Gonâve, watch this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BX9nde2RZe

Video about La Gonave

Continued Capacity Building in Communities!

Community leaders sit to discuss measuring the capacity of their organizations

During our last trip to Haiti, we met with leaders around the island to get their input on how best to measure the organizational capacity of community groups, organizations, and associations. Every aspect of our work is done in partnership with the communities and community leaders we work with on La Gonâve. Even the selection of indicators we use to measure a community group’s capacity, to measure our impact, is done in in partnership with those communities. This participatory evaluation strategy ensures our projects are fully inline with the priorities of a community and leads to greater development without dependency.

We also signed an agreement (an “ako”) with the community association AAPLAG, to work together over the next three years to strengthen local capacity and improve quality of life on La Gonave. AAPLAG mobilizes communities to carry out projects and development activities to create a safe and productive society. The organization has been active for over 30 years and has completed projects independently as well as in partnership with large international organizations across the entire island. We are excited to see the bigger and stronger impact this partnership will bring.


Roots of Development signs a partnership agreement with AAPLAG

By working to increase the capacity of residents and officials on La Gonave to plan and design their own community driven development projects, the results are stronger and more sustainable. We continuously strive to be an example of how development can and should be done, setting the bar higher for NGOs and other charitable organizations like us.

To continue doing all the unique and impactful work that we do, everything you are reading about in this newsletter, we need your continuous support. Please remember to donate when you can. All donations, regardless of size, make a difference.  



Getting Involved in KONBIT

In an effort to strengthen the projects we support, our own capacity as an organization, and to bring greater opportunities to the island of La Gonave, we are getting involved in the USAID funded program KONBIT, which is run by the Haitian firm Papyrus.

KONBIT, an initiative of USAID led by Papyrus

We have met to discuss their mission and how the services they are providing can benefit Roots and our local partners on La Gonâve. The word KONBIT, in Creole, refers to ”teamwork.” The project aims to establish comprehensive capacity development services for Haitian civil society organizations, so that they are better equipped to implement their own solutions to the country’s greatest development challenges. Papyrus, the implementing agency for this project, hopes to increase the number of local development partners that are capable of effectively competing for and managing USAID resources.

Partnerships like these, when added to the support we receive from individuals like you, help Roots grow… and increase our impact on La Gonave. Stay tuned for more details on how we end up using this interesting opportunity.



Roots of Development is a 501c3 organization that is audited annually by an independent CPA.
Flowing Tree w/ birds
Straight Tree

Like what you see? At our 10th Annual Fundraiser in DC we sold handmade Haitian metal art made by local craftsmen in the town of Croix des Bouquets. Historic to Haiti, this unique form of artwork is made from flattened metal drums, once used to transport oil, then carved into beautiful pieces of art. The following pieces are still available. Reach out to info@rootsofdevelopment.org if interested in purchasing a piece of art for $100, all proceeds support ongoing projects on La Gonâve.

Introducing ‘Roots for Rasin’ — Development Without Dependency at Its Best

Inside the walls of a 2,000-square foot building on the Haitian island of La Gonave, Roots of Development’s mission has come to life. When Field Director Lineda Paul asks questions about what Haitians need, they hear development without dependency. And when Haitians place their hands on the tile floor of the building — a permanent part of their hometown — they feel development without dependency.
This is Rasin Devlopman.
Established last year in Roots’ newly procured permanent office space on the island of La Gonave, Rasin, an independent Haitian organization, could implement Roots-funded projects on the island. Before that can happen, however, the organizations need to solidify a sustainable partnership.
No easy task, and we can’t do it without your help.

Your investment in “Roots for Rasin” will solidify a permanent, Haitian-run presence for Roots of Development on La Gonave.

Your investment in our newly launched “Roots for Rasin” campaign will quickly make Rasin Developman the official programming partner for Roots of Development on La Gonave. With the funds, Roots will hire a consultant to establish policies and procedures that will keep the organizations’ missions aligned for the foreseeable future. This arrangement will establish Rasin as Roots’ partner on the island, and ensure sustained funding for development without dependency in Haiti.
Roots, meanwhile, will emerge from this process as a transformed entity that focuses exclusively on raising funds for projects selected and implemented by Rasin and other Haitian organizations. Because these organizations are independent entities, they will not be dependent on Roots for programmatic guidance — and that is development without dependency at its best.
To donate to this campaign, click here and select “Roots for Rasin” from the dropdown on the next page.
Thank you in advance for your support of this project. It will pave the way for a new future for Roots. But much more importantly, it will help Haiti take control of its own future.


Sincerely yours,
Roots of Development

This Is Why You Support Roots of Development!…


Our expansion on the island of La Gonave is underway, and it has introduced us to a new group of dynamic leaders who are leading some truly inspiring community-driven development activities.


4-days of workshops on leadership, community, and economic development


From March 26th to March 29th, we carried out a series of workshops centered on Leadership, Community and Economic Development. The workshops were funded by the Inter-American Development Bank and carries out in partnership with CLE Haiti (Haitian Center for Leadership and Excellence). After months of planning, over 75 community leaders and government officials from across the island came together to participate in these workshops. They met other like-minded community leaders and focused on strengthening their capacity in various areas that will help them improve quality of life on the island.

The first three days of the program consisted of skills-building activities and included a presentation on the tools involved in “ABC Development” (Asset-Based Community Development), which is development that is driven by local resources and local leadership. A special emphasis was also given to economic development, including a program on budgeting and value chains.  Other workshops included a discussion on civic engagement and more collaborative and effective leadership.

The last day of the workshops was specifically dedicated to women leaders, and their role in the development of their communities. The women came from all parts of the island and included merchants, beauticians, activists, students, mothers, health promoters, government officials and more. A day focused on, and with, only woman participants provided a different dynamic and a discussion that takes into account the unique realities women leaders face in their communities. It ensured a strong representation of women in the program and a unique networking opportunity for the female leaders of La Gonave.

After the completion of these four days of workshops, participants were encouraged to return to their communities and organize their own workshops to share the information learned. Our staff will continue to follow up with those leaders and communities, reiterating the concepts and answering any questions that come up. We saw the emphasis on community-driven development really resonated with participants, and we expect it to make its way deeper into the approach and strategies used by local leaders on the island.

Additionally, after the first set of workshops was completed, two outstanding leaders were invited to participate in a Master Training Program (MTP), managed by our partner CLE and held in the north of Haiti a week later. Venicia Dacius and Gabriel Vadner, two elected local government representatives (CASEC) from two different communal sections on La Gonave took part in the two-week Master Training Program. Participants of the program were trained in specific competencies to then become “facilitators” themselves. They are now capable of, and expected to lead short technical training modules (PLTTPs) for leaders and organizations working in their communes.

“Organizational capacity building is both an end in itself and a means for increasing the power of citizens and communities.” CLÉ Haiti 

One of the biggest challenges to development work that is based on capacity-building, is measuring and demonstrating its impact. Unlike building a new school or hospital, the results are not necessarily seen immediately. However, it is only a local population’s ability to manage and maintain those buildings that makes it sustainable.

Roots of Development has worked intensely over the last year to find ways to better measure the impact our workshops have on participants, as individuals and on the communities they represent. In partnership with CLE Haiti and Hilltop Consulting of Georgetown University, we developed tools to assess the effectiveness and usefulness of these recent workshops and to track their impact over the coming months and years.

At the end of the four days, participants were asked for their feedback on the workshops such as which subjects were most and least helpful to them and which subjects they hope will be covered in the future.



Their feedback will help us understand which subjects are of greatest use to them and evaluate how their understanding of certain concepts has changed. Many of the comments shared with us gave us great insight into how participants are understanding the role of civil society after the completion of the workshops…

“We have to take the responsibility to change our community.”


“I will organize meetings to share with others what I have learned.”


“I think that if we apply what we learned here, we can solve many problems that we have faced for a long time.”

This program is part of Roots of Development’s long-term strategy of identifying and supporting a wide network of community leaders on the island of La Gonave, and providing them with opportunities to strengthen their organizational capacity in order to more effectively and more sustainably improve quality of life on the island. Roots of Development has always believed that investing in the capacity of the local population is the most sustainable approach to development: “Development Without Dependency” or if you prefer “Devlopman grès kochon kwit kochon”!

Please continue to support Roots’ activities. These programs, the follow-up that must be done afterwards, and the constant strengthening of our programs depend greatly on your continued support.




A visit to La Gonave by the Pan American Development Foundation (PADF)

Our last trip to Haiti was also important in that we started a new relationship with an important partner that we hope will get more and more involved in La Gonave’s development. We hosted the Pan American Development Foundation’s Country Director for Haiti, Nadia Cherrouk, as well as one of their senior community development specialists for a two-day tour of La Gonave.

We invited them out to get a better understanding of the island’s needs and its potential, and to explore ways in which they can bring their experience and expertise to the island to reinforce the work of local leaders and their communities. While visiting the island, they met with the mayor of Anse-a-Galets (La Gonave’s larger commune) and other government representatives and community leaders from around the island, communities up in the mountains and along its coastline.

The visit was productive, and has already resulted in introductions to companies that work in clean water and recycling. Together we are exploring programs we can bring to the island to address some of its greatest needs, include trash collection and recycling, access to clean water, economic development and community capacity-building. The visit of the Pan American Development Foundation is the first of what we hope will be many more visits by like-minded organizations that are willing to support local development efforts on the island of La Gonave.


A Powerful Video to Bring Attention to La Gonave

We are almost all set to produce our video about La Gonave! We have raised the funds needed (from a group of generous Haitian companies) and selected the production company in Haiti that will film and produce the video for us. We are coordinating with local officials and community groups to identify the most important sites to capture in the video, interviews to carry out, and projects to highlight.

The goal is to produce an attractive and intriguing video about La Gonave that will bring greater attention to the island. We plan to highlight its greatest challenges and showcase its tremendous potential, in order to attract more partners to get involved in the sustainable development of the island.

A Haitian multimedia/video production company called Muska Group will be filming and putting the video together for us. And, as we mentioned earlier, funding for the video came entirely from a group of Haitian companies dedicated to our work on La Gonave. Those companies include Maison Henri DeschampsGalerie MonninR&R ConstructionFondation Sogebank, and others. On behalf of Roots of Development and all our stakeholders and community partners on La Gonave, thank you so much for your generosity. This exciting and important video would not have been possible without your support!

The video will be completed by the end of June and premiered at our annual event in D.C. on Saturday, June 23rd. Stay tuned!


Tickets to our Annual Event in Washington D.C. are Now Available!

Show your support! Roots of Development’s largest and most important fundraising event of the year, held in Washington D.C., will take place this year on Saturday, June 23rd 2018.

Eventbrite - Roots of Development's 10th Annual Fundraiser in Washington DC

Diverse and influential guests, business and political leaders, media and entertainment personalities gather in D.C. to celebrate Haiti and support Roots of Development’s unique approach to development.

Food and cocktails will be served and are included in your ticket, as are many other exciting activities such as live music, dancing, artwork, notable guests, a silent auction, etc. And we have a couple of truly unique surprises up our sleeve this year, in celebration of the event’s 10th anniversary!

Be sure to join us. You and your guests will be educated, inspired, and treated to the very best Haiti and Roots have to offer!

Get your tickets now: https://roots10thannual.eventbrite.com

Eventbrite - Roots of Development's 10th Annual Fundraiser in Washington DC


Another thank you to all those who supported our CT fundraiser in March

Roots of Development’s 6th annual CT dance fundraiser took place this year on Saturday, March 24th. It was successful and a lot of fun. Thank you to all who showed up, to the organizers Linda and Peter Jacques for their time, energy, and steadfast commitment to Roots, and to all our corporate sponsors. Without your support, this event would not be the success it is every year. Thank you.