Labranle is a communal section in northwestern Haiti. It is the 5th communal section of Gonaïves.




A forgotten corner


According to an author from "La Nouvelliste", living in the fifth communal section of Gonaïves, Labranle, is a difficult challenge. The population of this hinterland area is deprived of everything, even the rudimentary. Lack of health care, drinking water, school infrastructure, roads and telecommunications ...

General characteristics of the settlement

Arriving at the fifth communal section of Gonaïves requires that one wears well his shoes and buckles firmly his belt. For those who go there for the first time, it is the height of astonishment.

Labranle is largely agricultural. Hills and mountains dominate the landscape. The rate of immigration is lower than the rate of emigration, which is moderate. Nearly 60% of the population is under the age of 18 and females outnumber males by at least a few hundred. Most residents are locals from Gonaïves and the main emigration destination is the Dominican Republic.



Labranle is the northernmost portion of Gonaïves commune. It shares a border with Plaisance, Pilate, and Gros-Morne.


Labranle faces several environmental challenges including landslide risk, "great drought", and frequent water pollutuon. Combined with limited purchasing power, this severely impacts food safety during the dry season.


Labranle is largely agricultural. 60% of the land is devoted to agriculture, with roughly half of it irrigated. Although half, it has shown a steady increase over the past five years.

Abandoned farmland, also at a steady increase takes up at least 20% of the section's total land area. The main reason for abandoning the land is degradation of soils.

Workers breed cattle, sheep, goats, horses, pigs, and beehives.

The main agricultural products of the section are beans, Fransiscan Mangoes (Françisque), sorghum/millet, corn, bananas & plaintains, and tomatoes. This section also has a cassavarie (cassava mill)

Economic actions

Labranle is active in corn production, mango production, and livestock of cattle. However, Labranle can increase its productivity by improving marketing, transportation, soil quality, and access to veterinary care.

Secondary economic activites

include rice, cereal, beans, plants and fruits, trade, construction, and coal production.

Limited accessibility to plots keep rice production in regression. No access to credit hampers the production of other cereals.

Limited access to irrigation water hampers the bean production.

Nicole, Corrosol, and Dorlette are the main markets of the section.



Entrance to the Road to Labranle

Labranle is located just off the RN-5 and Route Labranle is the main access road. This stretch that connects with Gonaïves is rocky. It's like the road to Calvary. Taxi-motorcycles that make the circuit are forced to ask their passenger to walk a few meters, so is difficult access to Labranle.


Labranle has a taxi station on RN-5 at the Family Village intersection with Route Labranle.

The majority of inhabitants in this section walk to their destinations. This means a 6 hour walk to the main food market (35km away) or a 4-6 hour walk to the second food market (20 km away).


School infrastructures: a misery; The height of misery. This is the least that can be said of some rickety schools in Labranle. The National School of Corossol de Labranle works in the dirt. Sitting in a straw hut with an earth floor, the 300 students of this national school mingle to receive the bread of the instruction of three teachers available for eight classes. "For two years, this school has been serving children in the area. But, here means we miss a lot ", says sorry the director of this school, Ovilmar Saintélus, who is waiting for the help of the authorities of the Ministry of National Education to relieve the schoolchildren of Labranle this indigence. It is similar to the community school created by one of the section's CASEC members, Cenou Célony. "The will to do something for the population is there, but here the means are lacking," he regrets. These schools can only work in good weather. When it rains, children can no longer receive bread instruction. Because there is no difference between being in the rain and being in these schools.

This section has primary and secondary education.

Ecole Nationale de Labranle - Route Labranle, 5e Labranle, Commune Gonaïves

Siloe Labranle - Route Labranle, 5e Labranle, Commune Gonaïves

Higher and Vocational school students must travel 35km away to attend school.



Medical center in Labranle

The section has a medical center, Centre de Sante Labranle. In the field of health, the 30,000 inhabitants of the communal section have something to complain about. The medical staff of the only dispensary in the area consists of an auxiliary. This one lives elsewhere in Gonaïves. What to justify his repeated absences. To that, it is necessary to add the glaring lack of material preventing the dispensary from playing its full part. In such conditions, the patients have no choice but to go to Plaisance in the Nord department or to Gonaïves in search of care. And to say that rogues who pose as doctors fetch money from the population. "We warn the population against these quacks," says Rony Pharisien, first member of the Council of the Communal Section Assembly (CASEC).


The section has six artesian wells and two public fountains. With no access to the drinking water system, or the power grid, the main source of drinking water is from the river.

Labranle is cut by a river that bears his name. It is in this river that the majority of the population draws water to quench their thirst. The dream of having a drinking water supply system can not be realized today. A project to capture a source near a giant tree has been abandoned on the pretext that the spirit living in the tree does not want it. "Here, we can not defy the spirits, if they do not want, we can not do anything about it," laments Vilmone, a resident of the section, looking helplessly at his little girl drinking water in a spring filled with frogs. "It's better to use the water of the river instead of irritating the spirits," he says, fear in the way. The problem of drinking water is only the tip of the iceberg.

There is no sanitation service. The main destination for household garbage is scattered in nature. There is a strong demand for wood cutting.


Communication (and Religion)

A challenge for mobile phone companies. The signal from none of the main mobile phone companies in Haiti has reached Labranle. However, many of the population of this very large communal section has a mobile phone. The plow seems to be put before the horse. The steps taken by young people in this section with the telephone companies are not yet producing the expected results. "We were asked to list the numbers and the names of all the people who have a Digicel phone in the community," revealed the initiator of this approach, Lorgeat Séguens, regretting that one year after submitting a list of more than 1700 numbers, nothing is still done by this company. As an unusual fact, a fixed point in front of the Catholic Church of the area was discovered where comes a weak signal from Digicel and Voila in the afternoon. Every night, people from all over the section gather in front of the church looking for a signal. If the signal is picked up, only people with a mobile phone with a speaker phone can place a call for one or two minutes before losing that signal. This state of affairs did not leave the first CASEC member of the zone indifferent. "This is a serious problem for the section's 30,000 inhabitants. If you have an important call to make, you have to walk several kilometers to make this call," Pharisien said. Because he too is the holder of a phone.

Social cohesion, integration, and conflict

The three main issues that generate conflicts and significant problems in the section:

1. Education level
2. Policy
3. Invasion of the fields by free cattle


The main holiday is Saint-Anne, celebrated on July 26.

Who is Saint Anne?

Saint Anne, Mother of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

What little we know about Saint Anne comes from the apocryphal Gospel of James. Read more about Saint Anne here.


Code Name Population Localities
LEB 5e Lebranle 10,633 Auguste, Bassin-Figuier, Bauvrai, Bodin, Bois Pin, Boulaile, Brunette, Cadette, Calebassier, Ca Robert, Castanette, Corossol, Couveret, Derrière-Morne, Dolant, Doucement, Dubois, Duperrier, Fond-Chatelin, Fond-Nicole, Fond-Sanse, Gouillomet, Gounotte, Guillaume, Imbo, Jean-Noel, Jean-Pierre, Mare-Printemps, Maro, Mérac, Nan Bois, Ramier, Roche-Plate, Vedrine.

Development prospects

In this section, there us much room for improvement to developing the economic output. Labranle's top three needs are agricultural roads, irrigation water pipes, and hill lakes.

Actions to be carried out in the agricultural sector within the section

1. Hill Lakes
2. Tanks
3. Establishment of processing units
4. Nursery development

References and Sources