Last week’s devastating hurricane left the southern tip of Haiti in a state of chaos. According to the United Nations, an estimated 1.4 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance and more than 1,000 Haitians have died. In some parts of the country, over 90 percent of the homes were damaged or destroyed. It is hard to believe that those who have already suffered so much must now face yet another large scale natural disaster. When will the suffering end for those who live in the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere?
With cholera already a concern, this storm greatly increases the likelihood of another cholera epidemic. Add to that malnutrition due to complete loss of crops and lack of access to clean drinking water, and the concerns of the medical community are clear. Haiti is headed toward one of the worst humanitarian crises it has seen since the earthquake of 2010. Right now, aid workers are rushing in to provide supplies and relief efforts are underway. But what happens in the coming months when the lack of shelters, food and water takes its toll? What happens to the mothers and children when the last relief workers have gone? Where do they turn for help?
VPI is committed to long-term support as well as to raising funds for immediate needs. The villagers need latrines and wells built so that they can have sources of safe drinking water. They need their crops replanted and nutritional supplements for infants and children provided. They need support so that health care workers can administer medications and vaccinations in outlying areas. Please donate today so that VPI can continue a long-term relief effort for Haiti. www.villagepartnersinternational.org
– Terry Leigh Deal
(Photo by: Tim Schandorff, MAF)