Disaster recovery program


About the World Bank Group in Haiti

The World Bank Group (WBG) in Haiti supports the efforts of the Haitian government to reduce poverty, lower the country’s vulnerability to natural disasters, rebuild critical infrastructure, strengthen human capital, promote decentralized and inclusive growth, and enhance governance. The WBG channels all of its funding through the government, and more than 75% of Bank-funded projects are awarded to Haitian enterprises.

“Despite the 2010 earthquake, a series of hurricanes, and political volatility, Haiti has made major gains in the fight against poverty, with the rate of extreme poverty falling from 31% in 2000 to 24% in 2012. This represents a victory for the Haitian people, and should make us hopeful that continued progress is possible.”

Mary Barton-Dock, World Bank Special Envoy to Haiti

Key figures

The World Bank’s Portfolio in Haiti stands at $718 and covers thirteen projects (as of August 2016).

Since the earthquake, funding from the World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA) has played a major role in Haiti’s recovery, with IDA having provided an exceptional grant allocation of $500 million. Highlights of WBG support in Haiti include:

• Inspection of 450,000 buildings in Port-au-Prince to ensure their post-earthquake security;

• Rental subsidies for more than 50,000 people to help them move from temporary camps to more secure housing;

Infrastructure improvements to benefit more than 200,000 people – work under way in neighborhoods

across the capital to widen roads, improve lighting, and reinforce embankments;

• 437,905 tuition waivers, making it possible for about a 180,000 youth to attend school,daily quality hot meals to over 372,359 students and financial support for more than 2,800 schools, allowing them to reopen following the 2010 earthquake;

• Cholera treatment and prevention training for nearly 3 million Haitians;

• 5,000 jobs created and 5,000 more preserved by the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the WBG’s private sector arm;

Training assistance for close to 3,000 entrepreneurs and managers;

• 70,000 entrepreneurs to obtain natural disaster insurance through a partnership between the IFC and Haitian microfinance company MiCRO/Fonkoze.


Access to education for children between the ages of six and 14 rose from 78% in 2001 to 90% in 2012, according to the “Investing in People to Fight Poverty” assessment. However, children from poor households have less access to school and are often too old for the classes they are in. Through the Education for All project, the World Bank and its partners, GPE and HRF, have made it possible for hundreds of thousands of Haitians from disadvantaged backgrounds to attend school by providing tuition

waivers, instructional support, and a school feeding program that offers free daily meals. Education for All emphasizes the quality of education by supporting teacher training and the preparation of pedagogical material. To date, this project has facilitated:

• 437,905 tuition waivers, making it possible for about 180,000 youth to attend school;

• Daily quality hot meals to over 372,359 students

• Grants for more than 2,800 schools, allowing them to reopen following the 2010 earthquake.

Urban Development and Housing

Urban areas have experienced a rapid expansion in the past two decades despite a nearly complete lack of urban planning or growth regulation. Many of those who settle in urban neighborhoods suffer from poverty, unemployment, and limited access to public services. The Neighborhood Housing Reconstruction project and Urban Community- Driven Development projects aim to improve infrastructure and basic community services in neighborhoods severely impacted by the earthquake, including by repairing and rebuilding homes and subsidizing rent to facilitate the relocation of displaced persons. Highlights of the projects include:

• Rental subsidies to help over 50,000 people move from camps to more secure housing;

• Improved infrastructure for more than 200,000 people in neighborhoods impacted by the earthquake, including wider roads, better lighting, and reinforced embankments;

• More than 400 community sub-projects implemented to address gaps in service delivery and infrastructure, improving living conditions for over 270,000 people:

ᵒ Solar street lamps provided access to electricity for nearly 120,000 people;

ᵒ Water treatment and distribution points benefited 130,000 people;

ᵒ More than 100 income-generating initiatives were launched.

Infrastructure and Disaster Risk Management

More than 93% of Haiti’s surface area and over 96% of its population are exposed to one or several natural disaster risks. Haiti ranks fifth globally in terms of risk exposure. To tackle this, the Infrastructure & Institutions Emergency Recovery and the Haiti Strengthening Hydro-Met Services projects are strengthening the country’s capacity to respond to disasters as well as the resilience of critical transport infrastructure. This support has included:

• Inspection of 450,000 buildings in Port-au- Prince after the earthquake, and assistance to draft and disseminate building codes for the reconstruction of houses and public buildings;

• Repair of the road linking Port-au-Prince to Jacmel, restoring access to the capital for half a million Haitians from the south of the country;

• Natural disaster insurance for 60,000 lowincome women micro-entrepreneurs through the IFC/Micro/Fonkoze partnership.

Health, Social Protection,Water, and Sanitation

Among the poorest Haitian women, fewer than one in ten give birth with the assistance of skilled health personnel.

Waterborne diseases caused by poor hygiene and sanitation kill more Haitians under five than HIV, malaria, and measles combined. Also, only 64% of Haitians have access to an improved water source and 28% to adequate sanitation facilities.

In this context, the World Bank launched two new projects: the Maternal and Child Health project which focuses on providing maternal health services for mothers and children under five and has a specific component on cholera prevention, treatment; and the Sustainable Rural and Small Towns Water and Sanitation project aimed at improving access to water and sanitation in high incidence zones for cholera:

• Over three million people benefited from health education and cholera prevention training;

• More than 600,000 people received water treatment products and/or soap;

• 6,000 health, hygiene, and other medical personnel received professional training;

• 200 cholera treatment centers and oral rehydration stations gained staff or equipment;

• Nearly 60,000 people in southern Haiti obtained improved access to drinking water;

• The National Directorate of Water and Sanitation launched its first sanitation roadmap to raise awareness and encourage households to build or maintain their own latrines.


Only 30% of Haitians have access to electricity. In rural areas, the number is even lower, at 11%. TheRebuilding Energy Infrastructure and Access projectfocuses on improving access to, and the quality of, electricity; strengthening management at the public electricity enterprise; and reducing state transfers over time. The project also seeks to expand access by integrating renewable energy into electricity grids. With support from the WBG:

• E-Power, Haiti’s first private power generation company, has increased installed electric production capacity by 35% in greater Port au Prince and now generates power for 1.59 million customers;

• The Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training provides electricity to 500 rural schools;

• 18,000 people benefit from new, solar-powered street lights installed in Port-au-Prince;

• The Ministry of Public Works, Transport, and Communication launched a new energy unit.


Close to 80% of Haitian households working exclusively in the agricultural sector are poor. To increase income and opportunities in this sector, the Strengthening Agriculture Public Services project is financing efforts to enhance public agricultural services, including subsidies, with the aim of boosting the production yield and income of the rural population, and is using a community-driven approach to support the development of small-scale rural infrastructure:

• In La Plaine des Cayes, 3,000 farmers have received training and vouchers to partially fund labor costs, fertilizers, and pesticides, helping increase harvests and cultivated land area;

• Since 2014, the government, with support from the World Bank and Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), has used tagging to improve the traceability of 750,000 of Haiti’s 1.3 million cattle. Each is listed in an online registry with information on its owner, which helps reduce risk of robbery and plan vaccination campaigns and other efforts to mitigate the outbreak of disease.

Regional Development

In order to revitalize the economy and support the government’s vision for inclusive growth and decentralization in the aftermath of the earthquake, the WBG is also investing in regional growth poles:

• The Center and Artibonite Loop projectis facilitating greater access by roughly 190,000 producers, investors, and members of agricultural organizations in the region to local markets and services. The project aims to attract public and private investment, and to strengthen resilience to climate shocks;

• The Cultural Heritage Preservation and Tourism Sector Support project in northern Haiti will benefit nearly 35,000 residents with improved infrastructure, economic opportunity, and assistance with cultural events;

• Bank support will also help renovate The National History Park, which includes the Citadelle Henri, Palais Sans Souci, Chapelle Sans Souci, and Ramiers buildings.

Economic Governance

Strengthening efficiency, sustainability, and transparency in public services constitutes a cross-cutting program of the World Bank’s work in Haiti:

• Post-earthquake, the World Bank has helped several government agencies continue operations by purchasing equipment like computers and providing training to new government officials;

• The Bank has also supported efforts to build capacity at the Haitian Statistics and IT Institute and line ministries in data collection and analysis, which has helped produce the first poverty assessment since 2001 and the first public expenditure review in 30 years.

For nearly two years after the collapse of Mirebalais Bridge, students, patients, merchants, and other travelers had to use makeshift boats, donkeys, and, later, motorcycles to cross the river. Transportation was particularly difficult for children, the sick, and pregnant women. World Bank support helped construct a new bridge, and the impact is clear. Judeline, a hospital patient, is glad she no longer has to use a motorcycle, which used to violently shake her and her daughter on the ford. “Now I can walk with my child to the hospital. The cars go from one side and us on the other,” she says.

Private Sector

In a difficult business environment, the WBG has established a Business Development and Investment project to promote reforms aimed at improving Haiti’s investment climate, developing a more inclusive private sector, and creating jobs along the entire value chain of products such as coffee, cocoa, mangoes, and avocados. The project relies on ongoing engagement with local producers, entrepreneurs, and other partners in both the public and private sectors to identify which training and services - like organized storage, packaging, and transport systems - they need to hone their business plan and enhance, market, and export their products.

IFC is working to create jobs, expand access to basic infrastructure, and offer revenue-generating opportunities. Through its advisory programs, IFC focuses on creating a more attractive environment for investors and micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises:

Codevi, a garment manufacturing enterprise, is one of the biggest private sector employers in Haiti, employing close to 7,000 workers and delivering indirect benefits to 30,000 people;

• Nearly 3,000 entrepreneurs and managers received business training through Codevi’s partner, SOFIHDES.

Fifteen years after starting her first business—an Internet café—Sharline Du Buisson now owns a small enterprise that provides money transfers and sells cell phones. Sharline, who received business management training, believes her economic prospects have improved, commenting that “there are a lot of opportunities here.”

Leveraging the Impact of World Bank Group Programs

On top of its work with the Haitian government, the private sector, and civil society, the WBG aims to maximize the impact of its activities by sharing knowledge and leveraging the ef for ts of other international organizations such as the IDB, USAID, UNICEF, UNESCO, the European Union, Swiss Cooperation and Spain’s AECID, and the Canadian government.