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Press Release

CORE Awarded $5.4 Million USAID BHA Grant Providing 150,000 Haitians Food, WASH & Agriculture Support 

January 2024 – CORE (Community Organized Relief Effort) received a $5.4 million grant from USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA) for a 15-month project to respond to the urgent food security and water needs of 159,000 Haitians, further supporting the nonprofit’s decades-long humanitarian work in Haiti. This critical funding will enable water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) relief, cash and agriculture assistance to promote food security outcomes, prevent the spread of cholera in five communes in the Department of Nippes, and boost local economic capacity. 


Amidst the backdrop of the global pandemic and an outbreak of cholera, Haiti suffered from a devastating 7.2 earthquake in August 2021. The disaster killed an estimated 2,300 people and left 30,000 people without homes, exacerbating an already dire economic and political situation that continues today.  


Currently, 4.7 million people in Haiti, half of the country’s population, experience emergency levels of food insecurity. In Nippes, 62% of rural households lack clean drinking water and access to healthcare.

Staff working to clear roadways in Haiti, following the devastating 2021 earthquake. CORE photo by Liam Storrings. 

Staff unloading materials for a shelter in Pestel, Haiti after the 2021 earthquake. CORE photo by Liam Storrings. 

CORE will use this grant to respond to Nippes’s acute food crisis by providing cash assistance to roughly 5,145 households, helping cover basic food needs over the next year. To reduce long-term food insecurity, CORE is collaborating with Acceso to work with local farmers to increase production capacity and minimize post-harvest loss throughout 2024 by providing in-kind agricultural inputs and training.


To further support sustainability throughout the region (South, Nippes, and Grand-Anse), clearing roads previously blocked by the 2021 earthquake will help improve inter-departmental trade, build economic capacity, and increase humanitarian access within the South.  


In close collaboration with local partners, CORE will rehabilitate the current water supply by repairing five existing systems and promote hygiene through the provision of 4,000 locally procured household cholera kits to reduce and mitigate the disease’s effects on the community. 


Since 2010, CORE (previously known as J/P HRO) has worked with local partners to support the most vulnerable communities in Haiti. With this generous grant, CORE and Acceso will continue their humanitarian mission, providing local and sustainable solutions while ensuring those most vulnerable have access to vital resources. 


“Haiti has a deep place in the hearts of everyone that works at CORE, and the relationships and bonds formed with all of our local partners are lifelong,” said Ann Lee, Co-founder and CEO of CORE. “This grant from the Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance will allow CORE to help the vulnerable populations in Nippes, not just providing a band-aid to a systemic problem but bringing about long-lasting, tangible change.”  

About CORE 

Founded by Sean Penn and Ann Lee, CORE (Community Organized Relief Effort) is a global humanitarian organization that brings immediate relief and long-term recovery solutions to underserved communities. When a crisis strikes, CORE responds immediately to fill gaps, mobilize resources, and establish trust and collaboration from within communities. CORE has played a pivotal role in providing critical relief to marginalized and vulnerable populations since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic and the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine as it continues its mission of empowering communities in and beyond crises worldwide. For more information, see www.coreresponse.org and follow CORE on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. 


About BHA

USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA) provides life-saving humanitarian assistance—including food, water, shelter, emergency healthcare, sanitation and hygiene, and critical nutrition services— to the world’s most vulnerable and hardest-to-reach people. 


BHA is the lead federal coordinator for international disaster assistance, harnessing the expertise and unique capacities of other U.S. government entities to effectively respond to natural disasters and complex crises around the world. 


BHA takes a holistic look at humanitarian aid, providing assistance before, during and after a crisis—from readiness and response, to relief and recovery. This includes non-emergency programming that is foundational to linking humanitarian assistance to long-term development and the journey to self-reliance.