Haiti hit by 7.2 magnitude earthquake, here’s how to help

by | Aug 20, 2021 | Foreign Affairs, Policy

A 7.2- magnitude earthquake over the weekend has left over 2,000 Haitians dead and over 12,000 injured in Saint-Louis du Sud, Haiti. 

According to statistics from the USAID Disaster Assistance Response Team, 83,300 houses have been damaged from the earthquake and 2.2 million people have been exposed to MMI level shaking. 

Tropical Storm Grace followed shortly after the earthquake and added heavy rain and wind to the already damaged infrastructure. 

Hospitals were also destroyed in the earthquake and many are packed with injured residents and COVID-19 patients amid a global pandemic. 

Right now, zero percent of the Haiti population is fully vaccinated and less than one percent has received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. 

Haitian Prime Minister Ariel Henry said the country is “on its knees” and is “physically and mentally devastated.” 

These natural disasters come one month after former Haitian President Jovenel Moise was assassinated in his home by 28 foreign mercenaries. 

In addition to the assassination, Haiti is still recovering from the 2010 earthquake which left over 200,000 Haitians dead in the country’s capital Port-au-Prince. 

Haitian and American non profit organizations have been on the front lines helping communities gather basic necessities such as food, water, and shelter. 

In Texas, a Dallas organization Texas Baptist Men is working to provide Haitians clean drinking water through filtration systems that can produce 5-7 gallons a day. 

“These are bucket gravity filters that can be used in houses and basically provide clean drinking water for years,” John Hall, a spokesperson for Texas Baptist Men said. “Were sending at least 200 family filters possibly more down into Haiti as well as more resources”

According to Hall, TBM is buying the buckets in Haiti to boost their economy and then shipping more resources from Dallas. 

Hall said TBM have been working with a church in Haiti since the 2010 earthquake and sees similarities in basic necessities and relief. 

“Houses have collapsed, buildings have collapsed, there needs to be a rebuilding effort,” Hall said. “You have sanitation systems that needed improvement to begin with and now are completely broken.” 

Undoubtedly, Hall said Haiti is in desperate need and encouraged all Americans to help any way they can.

“Every moment that passes is another moment they need help,” Hall said. Other organizations on the frontline providing meals, clothes and services to Haitians include Fokal Haiti Relief Fund, Locally Haiti, Hope for Haiti, World Central Kitchen, and Convoy of Hope.

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Kennedy is a recent graduate of the University of St.Thomas in Houston where she served as Editor-in-Chief of the Celt Independent. Kennedy brings her experience of writing about social justice issues to the Texas Signal where she serves as our Political Reporter. She does everything from covering crime beats, Texas politics, and community activism. Kennedy is a passionate reporter, avid reader, coffee enthusiast, and loves to travel.

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