Leveraging Effective Application of Direct Investments (LEAD)

LEAD aims to attract investment in Haitian commercial enterprises, particularly those with potential for growth, income generation, and job creation, as well as to increase the development impact of remittances invested in community-level social enterprises.

LEAD Expo & Awards Ceremony - June 8th 2017

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Diaspora Challenge Initiative

The 10 winners of the Diaspora Challenge Initiative were announced at a symposium
at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in January 2017. 

About Lead

Find out more about what LEAD does, how and where we work, and the activities we take part in.

Invest in Haiti

Ready to take the next step? You can invest in Haiti or participate in the competition yourself.


Read more about each of our current Grantees and their businesses that LEAD helped grow.

LEAD’s primary activity to promote the mobilization of capital is a business plan competition (BPC) open to entrepreneurs, investors and SMEs in Haiti and abroad that want to create and/or expand commercial activity in Haiti.

For more information about the competition, please see here

For a full list of past winners, please see here

One of LEAD’s key objectives is to promote impactful Diaspora investments in Haiti. LEAD has funded 9 enterprises that are Diaspora-led, and continues to support these enterprises with ongoing technical assistance on issues such as access to markets, product development, and environmental management.

LEAD has organized, through partnerships with Diaspora-based organizations such as the Haitian Hometown Associations Resource Group (HHTARG) and the Haiti Renewal Alliance (HRA), many roadshows in key U.S. cities such as Miami, New York, Boston, Chicago, Miami, Atlanta, and Washington D.C. These roadshows were used to promote the Business Plan Competition, encourage investments in Haiti, and engage the Diaspora to understand how remittances could be leveraged to support private enterprise development.

 In the fall of 2014, LEAD and the HHTARG launched an online survey to members of various Haitian hometown associations throughout the world seeking to understand the barriers to investment. The results of the survey and policy recommendations will be available here at a later date.

LEAD builds upon PADF’s successful “Remittances for Development” methodology by running a competition for its Social Development Fund.

The goal is to leverage Diaspora philanthropy and community-based assets to fund small-scale social development projects. The competitive process yielded 7 winners, each working towards sustainable development in their communities while addressing social challenges.

The project provides 1:3 funding, for requests between $1,000 and $10,000 for projects that can be implemented within short timeframes. The projects were judged on a variety of criteria including social impact, community involvement, feasibility, viability, and sustainability. LEAD’s SDF only funds projects located within the 3 development corridors of the US Government.

Today, we are pleased to showcase these 7 winners of our Social Development Fund. Stay tuned for opportunities to continue to support these projects via our diaspora engagement portal.

Grantees by Corridor



$2.08M committed in USG funds
Leveraging $2.4M private capital
12 entrepreneurs, 3 diaspora, 4 woman

St. Marc 

$729,484 committed in USG funds
Leveraging $922,606 in private capital
6 entrepreneurs, 2 diaspora, 4 woman 


$4.38M committed in USG funds
Leveraging $4.5M in private capital
26 entrepreneurs, 7 diaspora, 11 women

Mixed Corridors

$200K committed in USG funds
Leveraging $207k in private capital
1 entrepreneur