Cooperacion Técnica Para El Desarrollo De La Microempresa
COTEDEMI (Technical Cooperation for Micro-entrepreneurial Development of Jimaní) is an association of businesswomen who have been displaced by the 2010 earthquake in Haiti.
Women are most vulnerable when crossing borders without legal documentation such as passports, visas, birth certificates, or other forms of identity since their births were either never registered or they lack the economic resources to secure them. Without legal documentation migrants are not eligible for any type of assistance and are considered to be non-entities by government officials. Living in such a limbo state, they are subjected to extortion and both physical and sexual violence. COTEDEMI was created to provide better opportunities for Haitian women by encouraging and supporting their entrepreneurial spirit and adding value to the businesses they establish in Jimaní.
COTEDEMI provides training classes for migrants on how to use prime materials to make cleaning products such as detergent and liquid soap. COTEDEMI also provides the space where the women unite to make the products, which are then sold in Malpaso and in the markets of Jimaní. COTEDEMI lends the materials needed to produce the cleaning products, plastic bottles, and labels on a payback model. This helps migrants to avoid the risk of traveling back to Haiti or to Santo Domingo where they are oftentimes abused along the way.
Furthermore undocumented workers have no access to Dominican banks. With funds provided by MICFA, COTEDEMI has already begun to give credit/loans to immigrant women, which have led to significant improvements in the livelihoods of group members and their families. We are currently seeking volunteers willing to work in challenging conditions in an effort to impact one of the most vulnerable groups in Dominican society.
Volunteers with a background in community organization, international relations, microfinance, or human rights are needed.
Director of Programs
Jimaní, Dominican Republic