Monday, February 01, 2010
It is Estimated that up to One Million In Haiti Need Shelter, Thousands Need Tents Today
At this time the estimates of Actual People living without proper shelter in Haiti at this time is 950,000 to over 1.5 Million. It is difficult to assess the actual accurate number as people continue to migrate to the countryside, and the dead are still being counted. The critical issue is that the Survivors that did survive the Massive Quake are now vulnerable to the elements, disease, violence and exposure. The Rains will start in the Spring, and the concern is that this will lead to even more effects of the Catastrophe.
We all know from watching Katrina there is nothing worse than watching people die in the Aftermath of Survival. It is also important to understand that the people there have been still suffering ongoing aftershocks and quakes,so they are not feeling safe to return home, and it may be months before structurally safe shelter can be build. ( Architecture Safety Checks are still ongoing at this time). Those recovering from injuries and receiving medical care also need Tents to heal and recuperate. Many people even now are creeping into piles of rubble to try to retrieve materials,sheets and blankets to make Makeshift Tents.
These are resourceful brave people being creative,but they need better shelter,especially while Assessment Teams try to evaluate where and how to rebuild.
I have been on a mission for most of the past week to try to find out WHO to contact that is already providing delivery and distribution on the ground of Tents. We do know some smaller organizations are handing out Tents, Tarps and Shelterboxes. BUT we now need to know WHO is making sure to spearhead the Tent Project. I even coordinated some Companies willing to donate the TENTS, and even a possible Supply Company that is willing to deliver them to Haiti. But all of this is worthless without Someone or Some NGO on the ground willing to help coordinate the Tent Distribution. The First Location should be the Largest Tent City in PaP, which would be the Gold Course at Petionville. And there are communities in Leogane and Jacmeal that are also in need of Tents so we need contacts in those places as well.
The World Food Program is really ramping up efforts on the ground and have made significant Strides in recent days, and I am hopeful that their Organization while distributing food also might be able to contribute to the Logistics of Where the Hungry and Unsheltered are. The Women receiving food need shelter to protect the food so it won't spoil as well, and that it have protection from the elements.
Now that the Media has mostly left it will be up to many NGO's on the ground to coordinate much of the work and recovery and care of the Haitians. Some of the issues I am already making calls and emails are : School Issues ( including WHO will be donating and distributing school supplies on ground,a majority of the schools on the ground were destroyed), Women & Childrens Health and Protection, and ElderCare, AIDS Care, Vulnerable Population issues. I am also still encouraging that people donate to Partners in Health and MSF, Doctors Without Borders as the Medical Community there has been decimated and will need to rebuild.
It is estimated that many of the schools that were in session that later January Afternoon were destroyed, more than half did not survive the quake. The number of school children that died is also not known. This photo of a school destroyed raises many questions about the children. If you look at this photo closely you can see the desks in the rooms. About the Children I am haunted ....Did they survive ? Where are they now ? When will they have schools again ? An entire generation of children without schools. If they had Tents now, they could atleast be having some sense of community,routine and normalcy to combat PTSD and the psychological trauma that will be ongoing. So if Big Tents are donated this could really help the situation for start up schools.
According to freelance journalists on the ground this sign is all over, on many corners....
Imagine that we flood this nation with much needed Shelter and Tents....think of WHO you can contact that would be willing to donate Tents, Climbing Stores, Outdoor Equipment etc. I will keep you posted on this effort...as we locate which NGOs to work with who would and will do distribution on the ground.
Partners in Health : Stand With Haiti Organization
Doctors Without Borders (MSF)
Tuesday 2.2 Tend Update
I have reached out to two major National Tent Suppliers and established contacts, and one major Shipper to Haiti. I am trying to set up a way that families can call in and Order a Tent be donated and sent. Letters have been sent to major Relief NGO's for ground contact/distribution in Haiti. I will keep you posted as to the Results of these contacts. The Problem continues to be finding out who on the Ground is in charge of Distribution.