Horrible scenes are unfolding in Haiti following the 7.2 earthquake that devastated the Les Cayes (Southwest) region Saturday morning.
Thank you to the many supporters who have reached out to Rayjon to ask about the well-being of our partners and how you can help. We are grateful to report that all staff and partners are safe. While tremors were felt far away, the areas of Cap Haitian (site of the Centre for Nutrition & Education for Women & Children) and St. Marc (where Rayjon supports community development through Alpha Adult Literacy, Microcredit, Education, and is working with the Haitian Women’s Federation) have not been devastated by the quake. All activities are continuing as normal.
The same is not true in the Southwest, in Les Cayes and the surrounding areas, where the death toll now stands at over 1,300 with thousands more severely injured. To make matters worse, tropical depression Grace is on route and is expected to cause flash flooding and mudslides, impeding relief efforts.
Organizations that Rayjon is connected with in that area are struggling to provide emergency assistance to most vulnerable and start on the road to recovery and rebuilding. We know that you care about the Haitian people. While Rayjon will not be directly involved in the disaster relief, please consider donating directly to one of the many wonderful organizations that are leading the recovery efforts. (We have been delayed in getting this information to you, because it took some time to communicate with all partners and understand how the relief efforts would be coordinated). Below you will find a list of organizations that we are connected with and trust, with a brief description of how they will be using donations to help during this crisis.
Rayjon has stood with the Haitian people through many trials, and we continue to do so now. You can count on us to share additional updates from Haiti as the situation unfolds. We believe that investment in Haiti matters. We see so much progress despite huge challenges. Long-term partnerships are the backbone of Rayon’s approach to community development. Facing political instability, natural disasters and food insecurity, our Haitian partners will need our steadfast support and love through 2021.
Stay tuned later this week we’ll be sending out a very different email update, to share updates from another human-rights based project that affects Haitian families living in the DR. Thank you for your continued support.
PWRDF is a strong partner to Rayjon, currently supporting the breadfruit project with the Haitian Women’s Federation in St. Marc. They have supported humanitarian relief responses after the 2010 earthquake and Hurricane Matthew in 2016. As part of the Canadian Foodgrains Bank, PWRDF will be participating in a Humanitarian Coalition fund to support immediate relief
- PIH is mobilizing to provide urgent medical care for affected communities and for severely injured patients expected to be transported to health care facilities north of the earthquake zone. Founded in 1987 to support needs in Haiti, PIH has since become a leader in the movement to improve healthcare in developing nations and an expert in crisis health.
- Located in Cap Haitin in the North, Konbit Sante has been instrumental in building the capacity of the Haitian health care system. They are offering support to hospitals and partner organizations in the Southwest and are ready to help.
- TTFF supports Haitians to overcome poverty through sustainable agriculture. They are a valued partner of Rayjon and the Haitian Women’s Federation, supporting our vision for a breadfruit tree nursery and processing factory. Their response to the earthquake is unique. The breadfruit factory and bakery they support in the Southwest has been damaged, but is able to be repaired. TTFF will be doubling the amount of nutritious breadfruit baked goods they purchase every month from bakeries in the Les Cayes region—directly supporting entrepreneurs and sending needed funds back into the local economy. Best of all, the food purchased will then be donated to families urgently in need of aid.
- The communities where Haiti Tree Project is reforesting were at the epicenter of the Earthquake. Donations will go directly to helping communities in the area to meet their basic needs after the Earthquake, where many homes have been destroyed and food and shelter are urgent needs.
- Hope for Haiti (USA, not to be confused with St. Mary’s, Canada) has been working in southern Haiti for more than 32 years to resource and empower local leaders and support systems of education, healthcare, access to clean water, and economic opportunity. 62 of their full time Haitian team members call Les Cayes home. Donations will provide emergency medical supplies and equipment, rehabilitation of homes, schools, clinics, and more.