Meet KORE Farmer, Madame Merzenat

Four years ago, Merzenat Baronvil and her 5 children were homeless.  Her husband had abandoned them and moved to the Dominican Republic, never to return. A stranger to Boucan Carre, Haiti, and with no other alternatives, she and her children became domestic slaves or "restaveks" to another family in exchange for shelter. KORE's staff member, Anel, heard about Merzenat and her family. The chain of events that followed is how God began to intervene. 

Merzenat, like many others in Haiti, was trying to survive and support her family in country where few opportunities for work exist. Wanting to help, KORE built a 400 bird broiler coop on the property of the family she and her children were serving with the understanding that this would be Merzenat's business. As she began to earn and collect her profits, life became more and more difficult within the household. The host family wanted them out. Merzenat was again in a desperate situation.  

Over the next couple of years, she was able to persevere saving approximately $1150 to purchase a small plot of land.  The team at KORE worked to get her back in business on her new property. For the next year she walked a long distance to care for her coop on her land, continuing to save money for a house for herself and her 5 boys.  This past January, she was finally able to afford to build her home and free her family from their lives as domestic slaves.

She built a small porch extension on the end of the house and was ever so kind to invite us to sit and visit, looking over what she now could call her own. She shared that she is now saving money to enroll her boys into a nearby school so they can continue their education. 

While Merzenat's life is improving, she still faces many challenges. Below are pictures of her chicken coop and her home. 

You can see that due to exposure to the elements, this coop needs some updates.  Thanks to a generous donor, we will be able to provide her with a shade cloth and a new set of tarps to make Merzenat's business more productive.

There are dozens of other KORE farmers with unique stories, that represent incredible victories and overwhelming challenges. If you'd like to give toward business improvement for them, please give through the link below.