The world is visibly smaller while remaining more unequal, with less parity and greater inequity. We communicate in megabytes and sound bites in one sequence of events. These repeated patterns from the political, social, economic to the recreational arena are making learning a challenge or we can say they are challenging the methodologies and processes of learning as we know it. It has become essential to be not just a student but an evolving student of the world, shaping plans, selecting approaches and creating adapted strategies to conform and progress in a dynamically evolving environment. Our world requires an extreme capacity for mélange, extraction and blending, thus an unusual creative ability to adjust and progress at the same time.
The invitation to the Festival of ideas and art has been for me a renewal of reflection in arenas that have been the focus of my activities for the last three years. Prior to the earthquake of January 12th , 2010, I pondered on this question: How can I have such affinity to a place, a people, living condition a style of thinking while feeling that my contribution is so limited. Even when I knew the interdependence of the world makes it such that no one individual is responsible for change, I feel challenged to find myself in the chain of change.
While this is sharing an individual reflection, it is all about Haiti. It is the pervasive need to be integrated: the blending of belonging, obligation, duty and choice; all reminders that the ties are infinitesimally interdependent. The question becomes can Haiti change without, you (reader), me (citizen), the diaspora (disillusioned Citizenry) and outsiders, foreigners often more integrated in the internal affairs of the Country.
At times, I even ask can we be a nation despite our grand history. Can the diaspora become content and contained and support the internal practices that can create change rather than interpose the creativity that they have harnessed to adapt to their new milieu? Because I have created a framework that contains both my cultural source, my music, my colorful perspectives and survived in another land, is that strategy importable or transportable to Haiti? And will it lead to critical change? In the same way, I can ask can we import food from outside just because some market is subsidizing it and abandon our own ability to feed our people even more nutritiously.
A small group who has taken seriously the notion of grass roots as a core for innovation and creative adaptability, called the Lambi Fund attracted my attention with an approach, a methodology and strategies that are grass root driven, with local planning and local visioning in a partnership that is clad in parity, respectful of self-determination and mutual respect. Grass root meaning the population of Haitians in rural areas, those who are often denied their rights and remain afloat by their own efforts; they, in essence, have survived.
At the core of reconstruction, changing Haiti is about: Integration, Decentralization, Infrastructure development within a framework of renewal and protection of the environment; broadened advocacy through formal education, civic education and strategic partnerships for sustainable change.
Haiti has become a nation of projects. Out of diplomacy into reality, Can any of these projects be sustainable without a National Plan for Haiti with capable an efficient leadership?