An earthquake and storm struck Southwest Haiti in August 2021. A key piece of recovery is to ensure two-way communications with affected communities, using trusted channels. We are working with local Haitian and humanitarian partners to help affected communities: 1) receive lifesaving information and 2) voice their concerns and needs to help rebuild their lives. We'll strengthen local networks, including local media, and restore radio equipment and infrastructure in affected communities.
In August, the 7.2 magnitude earthquake and subsequent tropical storm struck Southwest Haiti, intensifying the grief of communities already reeling from COVID-19, rising gang violence, and political crisis. Today, journalists struggle to obtain information needs from, and to provide useful, reliable information to, affected populations. Additionally, damaged radio equipment and infrastructure prevents local media to deliver life-saving information to communities in most need.
We'll assess and restore damaged local media equipment and infrastructure in affected areas. We'll also strengthen local media and other civil society groups in Haiti, by connecting community organizations with local media, humanitarian, and health partners on the ground, and supporting them in humanitarian reporting and information gathering. This includes rumor tracking and ensuring local media and civil society's ability to communicate communities' ongoing needs at the national level.
In a country where over 70% of the population tunes in daily to radio, local media outlets and journalists are essential to rebuild communities. Additionally, in a country where social media is increasingly becoming a preferred space to receive and share information, our rapid response assistance will ensure that Haitians affected by the August earthquake and storm access life-saving information and trusted platforms to effectively voice their concerns and needs.