Our name

It means “Flying Alligator,” but it’s more than a literal reference to the Caiman, Haiti’s large, indigenous reptile.

Vole Kayiman Antrepriz is a Creole phrase inspired by the most transformational event in Haitian history.

The struggle for Haitian independence began in 1791 during a gathering in the northern mountains known as Bwa Kayiman, or “Alligator Woods,” a vodou ceremony in which Haitian slaves planned the first major uprising against their French masters. (Read more about Bwa Kayiman and the frequently misunderstood vodou culture and religion.)

After the revolution in 1804, the event took on legendary status, and Haitians today use it when referring to efforts or ideas intended to cause ambitious change.

Amy Wilentz, the acclaimed author, describes Bwa Kayiman in “Farewell, Fred Voodoo,” her latest book on Haiti: “The success of the inciting ceremony and voodoo’s historic connection to revolution and liberty have left an indelible mark on Haitians’ minds.”

The word “Vole” translates to flying, and we’ve added it to connote our intent to serve as a catalyst for soaring, uplifting and prosperous change.

“Antrepriz” references social enterprise, and speaks to our mission to partner with individuals and communities whose ideas and initiatives represent a broad spectrum — all sparked by the creativity and inventiveness abundant in Haiti.

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