Celebrating Haiti’s Martissant Park

In February 2004, as Haiti teetered on the brink of violent anarchy, the Open Society foundation in Haiti—Fondation Connaissance et Liberté (FOKAL)—set out to do something counterintuitive: build a park.

Updates:

Martissant Park represents the very real efforts of the Haitian people to preserve and celebrate the natural environment of Haiti inside Port-au-Prince’s clustered urban setting. The park is a public space designed to serve not only as a botanical park, but also as a cultural, educational and recreational space.

Covering approximately 42 square acres, the park is home to a strolling memorial for the victims of the January 2010 earthquake; the Katherine Dunham Cultural Center, which will host a resource center for residents of Martissant; a state-of-the-art medicinal garden; and a large botanical garden.

See more:

http://www.opensocietyfoundations.org/events/celebrating-haitis-martissant-park

Relapses and  maintenance of the park appear to be today’s issues according to comments.

Also:

http://www.opensocietyfoundations.org/voices/dream-begins-green-space

“….And today, for me, it is a personal utopian dream that has begun to come true. Martissant Park is giving new life and new meaning to a place that might easily have been destroyed.

In Haiti, during my lifetime, I have seen things with meaning fall apart. I have seen homes crumble, and buildings burn. Being able to breathe new life into a green area and have it serve a bedraggled, traumatized people and strengthen their dignity and confidence as they face the daily struggle to survive, this is rare anywhere. This is joy.”

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About fromourisland

Gardener, knitter, wife, mother of 2, grandmother, and lots more.
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