Monday, June 24, 2013

The trans-Caribbean trash exchange program

Ti Malice on a Florida beach (by

Recently, Florida resident Tom emailed me asking about the Ti Malice brand that he saw in the billboards in this post.  Turns out the tubs that hold this yellow margarine-like product are washing up in Florida, and apparently enough of them that caused the Floridian beach comber to inquire ‘What’s up with Ti Malice?’  See the photo taken by Danielle and Chelsea of Balloons Blow, a non-profit that picks up trash from Florida beaches (and visit their facebook page).

Ti Malice is a character in a Haitian children’s story.  He is the mischievous counterpart to his friend (or brother?) Bouki.  And he is causing more trouble by washing up in Florida.  This poses the questions:
  • Are there more tubs of Ti Malice than other brands being used then thrown away in Haiti?
  • Are the Ti Malice tubs sturdier than the other tubs?

Might make a good Master’s thesis!

And will also make a good classroom lesson about littering and the trash disposal systems in Haiti.  As far as I can tell, people either burn trash or throw it in the streams and on the beaches.  I’ve also seen systems (well, once, on a missionary compound) in which two pits are dug, one for burnables, and one for things that shouldn’t be burned (plastic, glass etc.).  This second pit is buried when full and another pit dug.  I’ve also heard that garbage trucks pick up residential trash in Les Cayes, but I have never seen this nor do I know where the trash is taken.  

I think I will make this a student project this fall: Report on trash disposal practices in Les Cayes.  Then perhaps we will have a campus clean up and brave a beach cleanup.  Once I learn what we should do with all the trash!

The 'dock' in Les Cayes where we were picked up in the little wood boat to go to Ile a Vache.  While waiting we saw a woman dump her garbage here.
The beach in Jacmel.  We saw people come out and dump their garbage here!

Friday, June 7, 2013

Furcy to Jacmel hike

In the spirit of promoting ecotourism in Haiti, I want to share this blog post that details a hike from Furcy to Jacmel through La Visite National Park.  I've never done this hike nor do I know these people, but the detail is great!