IOM Haiti has received CAD 20 million (USD 18 million ) in new funding from Canada’s Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development (DFATD) to assist in the voluntary return and relocation of approximately 16,000 internally displaced (IDP) households remaining in 60 priority sites.
Located in the metropolitan Port-au-Prince area, the selected camps include those at high environmental risk, under threat of eviction or located in schools, preventing access to classes for students.
The Canadian funding will allow IOM to help some 53,000 people to return to their communities of origin or choice and relocate from the camps to safe and dignified accommodation.
IOM will provide its support throughout the entire relocation process by providing a one-year rental grant through the Government of Haiti’s rental subsidy scheme, as well as tailored services and support in order to meet the specific needs of the most vulnerable individuals.
IOM services will include health, psycho-social and protection assistance; basic water, sanitation and hygiene services in the targeted camps until they are closed; continuous two-way communication on the relocation process to allow participants to take informed decisions regarding their housing options; camp decommissioning and handover to relevant authorities or private landowners; and follow-up with households assisted to ensure a smooth transition from camps to communities of return.
“Canada is happy to work with IOM, which has a proven track-record in providing secure, reliable, flexible and cost-effective aid to those in need,” said Christian Paradis, Canada’s Minister for International Development and La Francophonie.
“Our government has been supporting Haitian families since the devastating earthquake struck their country (in 2010). This initiative will help thousands of Haitian families, who have been desperately seeking permanent housing, and greatly improve their safety and quality of life,” he added.
Under the leadership of the Government of Haiti’s Unit for the Construction of Housing and Public Buildings, and in line with the government’s 16/6 methodology (16 neighbourhoods / 6 camps, initially intended for the closure of 6 camps and the return of nearly 5,000 families in 16 neighbourhoods), IOM, with the support of the international community, has assisted in the relocation of more than 35,000 internally displaced families since 2011, when the rental subsidy approach started.
“IOM is very grateful to the Government of Canada for their generous contribution that will allow thousands of Haitian families to rebuild their lives after four years of hardship living in the camps,” said Grégoire Goodstein, IOM Chief of Mission in Haiti.
IOM and Canada previously worked together with the Haitian authorities in 2012 to relocate 5,576 internally displaced families living in the notorious Champ de Mars camp, an area that included Port-au-Prince’s main park, the National Palace, police and army headquarters and multiple government ministry buildings.
Four years after the devastating earthquake of January 2010, an estimated 146,000 people or 39,000 households remain in 271 sites and camp-like settlements in Haiti.
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