All Hands is on the ground in Haiti and is basing relief operations out of Port Salut, on the southwestern coast. We are coordinating with local officials to prioritize needs. Our first activities center on clearing debris from a school that was destroyed. From there, we anticipate branching out to less accessible towns to the north toward Jeremie. Work will include the clearing of debris, creating temporary classrooms along with the installation of a school clean water system.
On October 4, 2016, Hurricane Matthew made landfall in Haiti as a Category 4. Haiti, the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, is still struggling to rebuild after a devastating earthquake in 2010. So far, over 1000 people have been reported dead, and 1.4M people are estimated to be in need of assistance.
Response activities center on clearing debris from a school that destroyed from the storm, and setting up temporary classrooms. Not only will this allow kids to get back to normal things like friends and learning, but since the school is the heartbeat of the community, it will help with healing and renewal for the whole town. Part of our work at the school includes installation of a clean water system for the community's use. This is crucial given the pre-existing cholera epidemic.
We often stay with affected communities over the long term after our initial response to rebuild homes, schools, hospitals, and other buildings affected by the disaster. To revitalize the community, we continue to focus our efforts on creating sustainable futures for the victims of the disaster. This program will be All Hands' third emergency response in Haiti. Following the 2010 earthquake, our volunteer teams worked in Leogane, Haiti, clearing rubble, building schools and installing.