NEARLY 3 MILLIONS HAITIANS ARE LIVING OUTSIDE OF HAITI.
Haiti's Diaspora are Haitian born individuals who leave Haiti to reside in a Foreign country. The Haitian Diaspora also includes the people born to Haitian parents. According to data collected from World Bank, there are almost 3 million Haitians currently living outside of Haiti forming communities around the world. These Haitian Diaspora communities are scattered on all the continents and include young, old, poor, rich, educated, & uneducated people. Members of the Haitian Diaspora are Haiti's lifeline. Official data gathered by World Bank show that in 2018, the Haitian Diaspora transferred a total of $3 billion to family & friends in Haiti. This figure also represents 31% of Haiti Gross Domestic Product. The $3 billion is also 2 times greater than Haiti's total earnings from exports and 3 times greater than the International Humanitarian Aid to Haiti. The Haitian Diaspora is without any doubts Haiti's greatest economic resources.
In the 1960s, Haitians left their island country to escape political oppressions from the Duvalier era to settle mainly in the United States, Canada, & France. In the 1980s, Haitian migrants left the country due to political instability on the island, economic duress caused by government corruption, natural disasters, & mismanagement of Humanitarian Aid. The devastated Earthquake of 2010 provoked the most recent waves of Haitians leaving their homeland to settle in foreign countries. Today, the number of Haitians living outside of Haiti is amounted to nearly 2 million people. The assumption is that most Haitians leave Haiti to escape poverty on the island that was once the wealthiest in the world.
The United States has the highest Haitian immigrant population with large concentrations in Florida & New York Metropolitan areas. The total Haitian Diaspora in the United States is about 1.1 million people including first generation, second generations and anyone of Haitian descent. The first generations includes Haitians who were born in Haiti but emigrated to the United States. The second generation group are Haitians born in the United States from one or both Haitian parents. The United States Census Bureau in 2015 is reported that the average age of Haitian immigrants in the United States is 45 years old. Overall, 54% of Haitians currently living in the United States are women compared to 46% men. Another important fact about Haitian immigrants in the United States is about 69% are between the age of 18-64, the working adults age group. 78% of the Haitian immigrant population has a high school diploma or higher. 19% of Haitian immigrants have a Bachelor degree or higher. On average, Haitian immigrants in the US have a household income of $47,200 a year.
HAITIAN DIASPORA, HAITI'S JEWELS
Among Haiti's stakeholders including the Haitian government, the Haitians at home, the International community, the members of the Haitian Diaspora especially those residing in the United States, Canada & France are in the best position to save Haiti, the First Independent Black Republic in the world. The Haitian Diaspora population is made of well-intended, well-qualified and very skillful Haitians who similar to their brothers & sisters back home want nothing but the best for Haiti, the second oldest nation in the Western Hemisphere. At this critical point, the Haitian Diaspora is one of Haiti's greatest valuable assets. The integration of this powerful group of people in Haiti's affairs is certainly the country's last & only hope.
Haiti is among the top countries with the most educated & skilled citizens living abroad. According to many studies, the 2 millions Haitians that make up the Haitian Diaspora includes 70% of the skilled and talented Haitians who left the country for a reason or another. A brainless country can not function. In addition, 69%of Haitians living in the United States are between the age of 18-54, the working force of any developed country. The same studies also confirm that about 93% of Haitians in the United States have had some kind of schooling, 32% of them have at least an Associate degree, 19% have a Bachelor or higher degree.
The Haitian Diaspora remain closely connected to their heritage together with their music, their food, their local community. Members of the Haitian Diaspora are the backbones of Haiti's economy. Official data gathered by World Bank show that in 2017, Haitians from all over the world transferred a total of $2.4 billion to family & friends in Haiti. This figured represents 25% of Haiti Gross Domestic Product (GDP). About $1.3 of the $2.4 billion come directly from Haitians in the United States. Haiti tops the list of countries whose survival depends primary on remittance from its Diaspora. The Haitian Diaspora represents a powerful force in the economy of Haiti and therefore must be an integral part of the country's development especially since it captivates Haiti's educated working adults and human capital, the most important group in any given developed societies.
The International community, the small and big NGO's, the Haitian government failed miserably to take Haiti to a path of meaningful development. The Haitian Diaspora community is well equipped with talented, knowledgeable, competent, capable, and enthusiastic Haitians with adequate monetary and human capital resources. If strategically engaged, the Haitian Diaspora has the capacity to lead Haiti toward sustainable development & real progress.