TITLE: The Peasant Movement of Papay
SPEAKER: Chavannes Jean-Baptiste, Adeline Augustin, Iderle Brenus, Mulaire Michel, Fanaheme Joachim, Bazelais Jean-Baptiste
EVENT DATE: 11/06/2009
RUNNING TIME: 151 minutes
Sponsored by the Hispanic Division, leaders of the Peasant Movement of Papay (MPP) from Haiti gather for an oral history of this movment. The MPP has become one of the most effective environmental peasant movements in Haitian history, successfully fostering economic development, environmental protection and individual survival. Chavannes Jean-Baptiste is the featured speaker accompanied by leaders of the MPP. Each speaker is an expert on their topic and have contributed to the creation of the MPP. Presentations are given in Haitian Creole followed by English translation.
Speaker Biography: Chavannes Jean-Baptiste is Executive Director and founder of the Peasant Movement of Papay (MPP). He is the national coordinator and national spokesperson for the National Peasant Movement of Papay Congress (MPNKP); member of the International Coordination Committee, via Campesina; and past member (2004-2008) of the International Commission for Food Sovereignty, via Campesina. Jean-Baptiste was in charge of the agricultural section at the Religious and Agricultural Initiation Center in Papay (1972-1989), director of the Catholic Church's social ministry (1977-1989), and member of the continental coordination of the International Movement of Catholic Rural Youth (1985-1989). He has founded fifteen agricultural and fishing cooperatives in five of Haiti's geographic departments. He is an agricultural technician, expert in peasant education and organization, and specialist in cooperative management and organization. In 2005 he was the recipient of The Goldman Environmental Price and received the Alan Shawn Feinstein World Hunger Award from Brown University in 1993.
Speaker Biography: Adeline Augustin is a member of the MPP Executive Committee and coordinator and group member of Radyo Vwa Peyizan, MPP's radio station. Augustin's professional training includes journalism, secretarial studies, and peasant leadership and organization.
Speaker Biography: Iderle Brenus is a member of the MPP Executive Committee, assistant spokesperson for the MPP, technical adviser to peasant organizations in Haiti, and past technical adviser to peasant organizations in the Dominican Republic (2007-2008). Brenus' professional training includes coordination and leadership of peasant organizations and economist having studied economics at University of Havana, Cuba from 2001-2007.
Speaker Biography: Mulaire Michel is a member of the MPP Executive Committee and coordinator and member of MPP Technical Group. Michel studied agronomy in Guadalajara, Mexico from 1992-1998 and studies in group leadership, peasant organization and project management.
Speaker Biography: Fanaheme Joachim is a member of the MPP Executive Committee, member of the MPP Education and Organization Group, and past secretary general for the MPP (1995-2003). Joachim's professional training includes coordination, organization and leadership of peasant organizations and groups.
Speaker Biography: Bazelais Jean Baptiste is the brother of Chavannes Jean-Baptiste. Born and reared in Hinch, Central Plateau, Haiti, he now lives in Brooklyn, New York. He attended Haiti's State University where, in 1978, he earned a degree in agricultural engineering. He has worked for Haiti's Ministry of Agriculture and spent one year with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). From 1981 to 1991, he worked in Haiti for the Papay Peasant Movement (MPP). In 1991 he came to the United States and attended Southern University of New Hampshire where he received his master's in community economic development. In 1993 he founded a non-profit organization in Boston dedicated to providing short-term aid to disaster victims in Haiti and to supporting long-term agricultural and environmental improvement in Haiti. His work through the Bassin Zim Education and Development Fund, Inc includes support of the work of the MPP in Haiti and encompasses the special initiative Seeds For Haiti. Seeds For Haiti was launched on March 1, 2009 in response to the urgent call for help of Haitian peasants after three consecutive hurricanes devastated the country in 2008.