May Day Celebrations Kick off in Cap-Haitien This Year with EkoLakay, Compost and More!
SOIL was excited to have the opportunity to participate in the vibrant (and delicious!) May Day Celebrations that kicked off in Cap-Haitien over this past weekend. The 3-day event, typically hosted in southern Haiti, made its first appearance on the north coast with much delight and pride. The annual event is hosted in honor of the Haitian national holiday, Labor and Agriculture day, celebrated on May 1st.
Agriculture is Haiti’s main industry and makes up over 60% of the workforce nationwide. This holiday not only serves as a celebration of agriculture itself, but also of the people that contribute to it. The fair, which usually takes place in Jacmel, was held in Cap-Haitien for the first time, which gave SOIL the chance to participate in a big way.
In honor of this year’s theme, “Ann jere dlo poun chanje lavi” (Let’s manage water to change lives) the Ministry of Agriculture reached out to SOIL to partner on providing sanitation services for the event. SOIL’s EkoLakay waterless mobile toilets were lined on the boulevard for public use and to showcase the practical benefits of our service: no running water required, safely managed waste and a compost end product! In addition to using our waterless toilets, event attendees were also able to visit SOIL’s stand, purchase compost and learn more about SOIL’s work.
This year, Haiti’s Labor and Agriculture Day coincides with another agriculture-related celebration, International Compost Awareness Week (ICAW). International Compost Awareness Week is the largest and most comprehensive education initiative of the compost industry (Compost Foundation). The purpose of ICAW is to raise awareness of the benefits and importance of compost in recycling nutrients in our global ecosystem.
At SOIL, we strongly believe in the power of compost to radically transform soils, ecosystems, and livelihoods. That’s why we’re committed to utilizing a waste-to-resource approach. SOIL safely treats 500 tons of waste annually and produces around 100 tons of compost from our transformative waste treatment process.
The benefits of recycling nutrients and harnessing the power of ecological processes to produce compost are wide ranging. Scientists and land managers have discovered that compost can help mitigate climate change by enhancing the ability of ecosystems to pull carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and store it in the soil as organic carbon. Compost also helps agricultural ecosystems adapt to the impacts of climate change by buffering against drought and flooding, and by helping plants use nutrients more efficiently.
SOIL’s Konpòs Lakay model was designed to support soil health through the transformative process of recapturing nutrients from human waste, creating an agricultural grade compost from the waste treatment process, and using the compost to revive depleted soils in Haiti. Transforming human waste into organic soil amendments can be an effective and safe strategy for improving soil health, tightening nutrient cycles, and promoting crop production that is more resilient to impacts from climate change.
In celebration of May Day, let’s celebrate the transformative power of compost today, tomorrow and always!
SOIL depends on individual donations from people like you to fund our lifesaving, earth-restoring sanitation services in Haiti. Please consider supporting SOIL today.
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