Haiti’s history is the story of perseverance in the face of tremendous, seemingly insurmountable adversity. The determination of the Haitian people has been tested over and over again, from founding the nation in a successful slave revolt, to weathering the coups, brutal dictatorships, foreign occupation, crushing debt and natural disasters that have plagued it for much of the last two centuries.
Haiti remains the poorest country in the entire Western Hemisphere with a per capita GDP of just $870. Natural disasters are a particularly severe cause of suffering, with over 96% of the population vulnerable to the hurricanes, earthquakes and floods that frequently afflict the island nation.
Humanity First USA believes we have a particular responsibility to help Haiti stand up and persevere, despite the daunting obstacles. Here is some of the work our international development and disaster relief charity has done to make life better for Haiti.
International Disaster Relief and Continuing Development
On January 12th, 2010, an earthquake took a cataclysmic toll on Haiti. The 7.0 Magnitude earthquake killed over 220,000 people and left another 300,000 injured, and millions more affected.
Humanity First was one of the first disaster relief organizations to help, with a team of 75 international and 20 Haitian volunteers on the ground. Aided by hundreds of volunteers and thousands of donors around the world, we brought urgently needed support and supplies, including food, clean water, shelter and medical care.
We treated over 23,000 patients at our Port-au-Prince medical clinic, along with dozens of mobile clinics wherever help was most needed. Our water filtration systems and family survival kits helped tens of thousands more, providing an ongoing source of water, shelter and basic personal care supplies. Seeing the ongoing need, we kept our Port-au-Prince base camp open through November, providing supplies and medical care to anyone who needed it.
Ongoing Efforts for Haiti
While years have passed since the earthquake, Haiti is still a very poor country, in need of help. That’s why Humanity First has stayed on to help, providing education for the children and healthcare for the sick in cooperation with other disaster relief and charity organizations, including Doctors Without Borders, the Haitian Christian Outreach and Where the Stars Still Shine.
Our Humanity First Bon Samaritan Primary School has enrolled more than 230 children in grades K-6, and become the pride of its community. We’ve also continued to provide healthcare services, including helping to build and run the only professional medical care facility in the remote Seguin Plateau.
Haitians are a determined people, but a severe lack of resources has held back their efforts to overcome natural disasters, poverty and other misfortunes. Help Humanity First USA provide the education, care and human development Haiti needs to build a more prosperous future.