Holt International Announces Suspension of Haiti Country Operations

By Holt International,

Oregon based international charity

It is with a heavy heart that we announce after more than 20 years of service to children and families in Haiti, Holt International is suspending our family strengthening and orphan care programs there indefinitely, effective April 1.

Since February 28, the security situation in Haiti has deteriorated significantly. Criminal gangs now control 80% of Port-au-Prince and have blocked access to the ports and all major roads in, out, and around the city.  Rising tensions led to the resignation of Haiti’s prime minister and it is unknown when there will be an interim government to bring stability to the country. As a result, Holt reevaluated its ability to deliver services effectively, safely and ethically in Haiti. Holt International, as a global child welfare organization, is neither equipped nor staffed to respond during a humanitarian crisis of the magnitude that is currently unfolding in Haiti. Ensuring the safety and welfare of our Haitian staff, partners and the people we serve is paramount, and sadly we are no longer able to implement programs or provide services to children and families in a way that maintains the safety and security of our teams and partners on the ground.

This decision to suspend our operations was not made lightly, especially knowing that it is during times of crisis that we see the greatest level of needs — especially for those most vulnerable.  As such, we will continue to monitor and assess our ability to deliver programs and services and will revisit this decision if and when the situation stabilizes, which is not in the foreseeable future.

Holt continues to process adoptions from Haiti. At present, there are a handful of families in process to adopt a child from Haiti, and several children have already been matched with these families. Our teams in the U.S. and Haiti will do everything they can to ensure these children can safely join their families in the U.S through ethical and Hague-compliant processes. Holt has closed the Haiti adoption program to new applicants.

As we suspend our family strengthening and orphan care programs in Haiti, we are tremendously proud of the excellent work and deep impact that our staff, partners, sponsors and donors have made in the lives of thousands of children and families in Haiti. Since 2003, Holt has worked to strengthen families to prevent family separation; supported orphaned and vulnerable children with education, nutrition and health programs; and helped unite children with permanent, loving families through international adoption. Over more than two decades in Haiti, Holt has served nearly 20,000 children through our family strengthening and orphan care programs and placed over 110 children through international adoption.

— Press release 3/28/24

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