This study is based primarily on in-depth tape-recorded interviews with hundreds of Haitians and Dominicans on both sides of the border. Fieldwork was undertaken directly by the two co-authors of this report. Murray assumed primary responsibility for interviews and chapters devoted to the Dominican side of the issues studied, and Smucker to the Haitian side of the border. Smucker accepted prime legal responsibility for the execution of the contract and for communication with USAID. He also undertook the final editing and synthesis of the report. In all other respects the work was totally collaborative. The authors are especially grateful to Philippe Cantave and Sharon Bean and of the Democracy and Governance team at the USAID/Haiti Mission, and for the cooperation and insights of hundreds of persons interviewed in the course of study.
The following document is presented to Save the Children in fulfilment of a contract for consultation on the design of a project in rural Haiti. It will begin with an identification of the two competing approaches to project organization in the rural areas that have surfaced as controversial discussion points between SCF and the USAID mission in Haiti. This controversy should be seen in a positive light. It permits a rethinking of these issues in light of SCF objectives and philosophy, and the design of a compromise approach which permits effective work in rural Haiti. I will propose what I believe to be a conceptual. vehicle for integrating the two approaches.
This report presents certain preliminary observations on the functioning of the Gros Morne Project. It is based on information during a brief field visit made during December of 1982. Both authors, at different times, had been approached by Project Staff with a view to possibly carrying out a formal evaluation of the project. This visit, however, was made as a preliminary contact, not as part of the formal evaluation. Because of the brevity of the visit, the information presented in these pages should be construed not as definitive findings, but as "carefully analyzed impressions." And we hope in these pages to present not an evaluation, but a listing of the many aspects of the program that a full evaluation should carefully examine.
In this report, we will present a somewhat detailed description and analysis of the food-related beliefs and behaviours of a community of Haitian peasant cultivators located in the Cul-de-Sac Plain. Our intention is to synthesize for readers interested in Haitian peasant life a complex body of information which we gathered on matters specifically related to food. This entails descriptions not only of community nutrition beliefs and ideals but also of actual community behaviour with respect to the preparation and distribution of food. Our hope is to present a clear, descriptive, dejargonized account of what people do to feed themselves and - especially - their children.
The following pages will briefly sum up and analyze the information relevant to family planning gleaned in several months of fieldwork in a Haitian hamlet. This period of exploratory research has been a useful preliminary not only for settling in learning the language and becoming acquainted with and acceptable to the members of the research community but also for isolating and clarifying the genuine issues around which the success of a program of voluntary fertility control will ultimately hinge. These issues, which should be the object of more exact study, are by no means self-evident. On the contrary.y it is very easy to misconstrue the problem. It will be argued in these pages that one widespread stereotyped image of the Haitian demographic situation--namely, that of a fatalistic population-whose religious, child-hungry men and women continue to produce offspring at a blind, self-destructive rate-- is a serious distortion.