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May 13, 2010

Progress Amid Chaos: Earthquake Relief in Haiti

Children waving from a tap-tap bus in Haiti
Children waving from a tap-tap bus in Haiti

The pig breeding project you have supported has been an essential part of earthquake relief in Haiti. Thanks to pigs that you have purchased rural peasants have been able to provide for the influx of earthquake survivors from Port-au-Prince to rural areas. Some community populations so much as doubled overnight. Working to provide these survivors with adequate food, water, shelter and clothing has been quite difficult for Lambi Fund's partner organizations. Thankfully, communities have been able to use their pigs to provide protein for sick patients in nearby hospitals and clinics and as a source of much needed income to purchase essential supplies for friends and family.

These communities need your continued support. Help replenish this local communities' stock of pigs and provide earthquake survivors with the opportunity to achieve sustainable incomes. Purchase a pig for a rural family in Haiti today.

Below is the main article from Lambi Fund's Spring Newsletter. Hopefully you find this informative- please click the link at the end to read all of the stories and to learn more about Lambi Fund's relief efforts post-quake. Thank-you!

On January 12 the ground shook. It trembled like never before. In just a few horrifying moments, a massive earthquake destroyed Port-au-Prince, Haiti’s capital, and major provincial cities like Jacmel, Léogâne, and Petit-Goâve.

The world watched in horror as the toll on human life unfolded. Never before, declared UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon, has a natural disaster been so devastating.

The Presidential Palace crumbled, UN headquarters were destroyed, building after building collapsed like pancakes.

Unbelievably, 250,000 residences were destroyed or rendered uninhabitable.

The horrible stench of death lurked in the city for weeks afterwards. Over 200,000 people were killed. More than 150,000 individuals injured and left to live life as amputees. In the blink of an eye, nearly 2 million Haitians were rendered homeless.

Responding to such a catastrophe has not been easy. Through the rubble, roads were impossible to navigate and trying to coordinate the influx of international donor agencies was declared a logistical nightmare.

Earthquake survivors left with no homes, no food, and no jobs quickly realized that aid distribution would be slow and unreliable.

Thus over 500,000 affected residents caught the first bus they could find to live with family members and friends in the rural provinces of Haiti.

This massive migration of internally displaced persons has wreaked havoc on already impoverished rural communities, where the average person still survives on less than $2 a day. Some rural populations (so much as) doubled overnight.

Keeping with the Haitian tradition of peasant solidarity, rural communities have been quick to take in quake survivors and have shared with them everything they have. The 80-year-old mother of the field monitor for Fon Lanbi Pou Ayiti has taken in 39 people in her small house.

Christianne Adrien, a street vendor, and her husband Ilson, a farmer, took in 18 members of her extended family. "If it were for the money, we would never have done it."

After the earthquake, more than a half million people fled Port au Prince and relocated to rural areas. They, along with thousands of peasants throughout Haiti have spent what little they have on clean water, medical supplies, clothing, bags of rice, and cans of beans for their new neighbors. Peasants have slaughtered precious cows to bring meat to patients at local hospitals.

Christianne continues, "We did this because we wanted them to have a life. If God saved the life of some people from a catastrophe of that size, it's so that we can protect the life of others. People have to live; you have to receive them."

It is here, through fellow Haitians and local grassroots networks that earthquake survivors are receiving the aid that they so desperately need. Resources are tight, but the spirit of sharing stays strong.

Links:

Mar 9, 2010

Earthquake Recovery Update- March 2010

Thanks for your support since the earthquake that devastated Haiti January 12th. With your help, the Lambi Fund of Haiti has been able to take extraordinary action to help meet the dire need throughout the country. Because of the Lambi Fund's deep ties with rural communities throughout Haiti, we are uniquely placed to support rural areas that have absorbed thousands of earthquake survivors that fled the rubble of Port-au-Prince, most with nothing more than the shirt on their backs. In the Haitian tradition of peasant solidarity, rural communities took in quake survivors and shared with them everything they had. As just one small example, the 80-year-old mother of one Lambi Fund staff member has taken in 39 people in her small house. As you can imagine, the already limited resources of rural community organizations quickly began to dry up, which is why we've devoted our immediate response primarily to providing financial resources to our trusted local partners so they can provide survivors with basic needs. Thanks to your support, 43 different community organizations throughout rural Haiti received cash disbursements to purchase food, clothing, medicine, and other essential supplies for the thousands of displaced persons who returned to the rural communities following the earthquake. This helped infuse the local economy as well. You are also making a difference with several women's groups in Port-au-Prince who lost everything in the earthquake, but are still standing up for the rights of women and children. With your additional support, you can continue to make a difference in Haiti by supporting what Lambi Fund has been doing in Haiti for the past 16 years - partnering with community organizations to strengthen their capacity to produce locally grown food, improve water access, expand pig and goat raising enterprises, and invest in community micro-credit funds. These programs allow more families to eat, more parents to work, and more children to go to school - all of which is fundamental to the long-term recovery and sustainability of Haiti. It is important to stress that the recovery will take time, as it has for major catastrophes before it, but with your continued commitment, Haiti will set itself on a new course of progress. On behalf of the Lambi Fund of Haiti and the people of Haiti, thank you for making all of this possible. Sincerely, Josette Perard Port-au-Prince, Haiti Lambi Fund of Haiti Country Director

Lambi Fund earthquake recovery meeting with locals
Lambi Fund earthquake recovery meeting with locals

Links:

Feb 8, 2010

Lambi Fund Pig Breeding Project

Haitian Family taking care of their pig
Haitian Family taking care of their pig

The Lambi Fund Pig Breeding Project is doing well and was not damaged by the earthquake. The organization members breed the pigs, and distribute some of the piglets in the community to sell to provide income for their organization. The group grows the feed locally and has a veterinary pharmacy so they do not have to travel into town if the pigs become sick.

“Pigs allow us to live, that is the way we take care of our kids and all of our needs.” Member of the Lambi Fund Pig Breeding Project

The Lambi Fund will need to triple the number of pigs to accommodate the massive influx of earthquake survivors moving to the area from Port-au-Prince.

Given that there is a high likelihood that most of those currently migrating to rural communities will stay permanently, there needs to be a dramatic increase in agricultural capacity to meet the increased demand for food.

Thanks to all of you who have supported the Lambi Fund Pig Breeding Project, and rural Haitian families.

Let us know what you think about our pig breeding project and how it helps Haitian families.

 
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