The situation in Haiti was already precarious in 2019 as the country continued to endure political upheaval, riots, and instability. Children were not allowed to go to school, businesses were ransacked, kidnappings were on the rise, and instability was at its worst since the 2010 earthquake.
2020 didn't offer any relief and the above challenges continued through the spring of this year. As if things couldn't get any worse, the global pandemic Covid-19, effectively shut the country down and is ravaging the economy, livelihoods, let alone the health of the Haitian people. Widespread hunger is expected, jobs are down even further, and a country that is already in peril on a normal day is now on the precipice of disaster.
In this precarious setting, Papillon Marketplace, a fair trade artisan facility that manufactures handicrafts and exports those goods, is miraculously still standing. Although capacity is down, we are working hard to continue to market our artisan's goods and keep the precious artisans that rely on our sales employed to the best of our ability.
We are hopeful that things will rebound somewhat, in terms of our wholesale and online retail market by the end of the summer. We are using our time to reorganize, do some much-needed analysis of our business, and prepare for what we have faith to be a quick resurgence of sales. We have also spent some time strengthening and growing our non-profit charity, Papillon Empowerment, and have been so thankful for the amount of support that has come in to help people in Haiti through this avenue.
Our mission is to empower parents with jobs in order to curb the orphan crisis in Haiti. When children have parents who are able to work and care for their needs, they do not place their children in orphanages. We believe that rather than following traditional hand-out models or charity, we want for people to maintain their dignity and rise out of poverty by being given the opportunity for employment instead. We believe the best is yet to come! With Gratitude and Hope for the future!