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PADF administers a USAID-funded program called LEAD (Leveraging Effective Application of Direct Investment) which supports the growth of small businesses in Haiti. The four-year, $12 million program is an effort to support long-term economic growth in the region. We spoke to Yve-Car Momperousse, a Haitian American who received $200,000 from the LEAD program to grow her business, Kreyol Essence, which sells organic beauty products made in Haiti.

Q: Why are businesses like Kreyol Essence important to Haiti’s future?

A: Kreyol Essence is a social enterprise, says Momperousse. “Social entrepreneurs focus on market-based approaches to problems. [This] leads to sustainable and more scalable solution[s] than aid programs,” she says, which are typically focused on short-term solutions.

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