Tuesday evening A massive 7.0-magnitude earthquake struck the Caribbean nation of Haïti.
The extent of this devastation is still unclear but there are fears that thousands of people may have died.
This is Haïti’s worst earth quake in two centuries, hitting south of the capital Port-au-Prince on Tuesday, damaging the presidential palace, UN Head Quarters and other buildings.
Currently a “large number” of UN personnel are reported missing by the organization and many people have spent the night outside amid fears of more aftershocks.
Describing the earthquake as a “catastrophe”, Haiti’s envoy to the US said the cost of the damage could run into billions. A number of nations, including the US, Canada, UK and Venezuela, are gearing up to send aid.
Rachmani Domersant, an operations manager with the Food for the Poor charity, told Reuters that overnight the capital was in total darkness. “You have thousands of people sitting in the streets with nowhere to go. There are people running, crying, screaming…People are trying to dig victims out with flashlights. I think hundreds of casualties would be a serious understatement.”
Earlier, bodies white with dust could be seen piled on the back of a pick-up truck as vehicles tried to ferry the injured to hospital.
This is indeed a very difficult time for the nation of Haïti and its people. However, it is important to note the resilience of the Haïtian people and their drive to overcome challenges formed against them. Indeed, L’union Fait La Force! (Strength Through Unity!)
There are many groups, organizations and people who are banding together to provide support and assistance at this time. Amongst them is Haïtian born recording artist Wycleff Jean who is using his charitable organization Yéle Haïti to raise funds and mobilize support. Jean, was made a roving ambassador for Haïti in 2007 and provides humanitarian aid and assistance through his Yéle Haïti foundation.
By texting Yele to 501501 you will be donating $5 towards Haïti’s earthquake relief
“Your money will help with relief efforts,” he wrote on Twitter. “They need our help – please help if you can.”
Haïti is the poorest country in the western hemisphere and has suffered a number of recent disasters, including four hurricanes and storms in 2008 that killed hundreds. It needs all kinds of help, from emergency and medical aid, to food aid, to the longer-term rebuilding of infrastructure.
Here is a list of organizations assisting the country. Check out the links and help where possible.
Jamaica Specific List:
- Persons who would like to make monetary donations can do so by going to the Cross Roads Scotia Bank or any other Scotia Bank location and make the donation to the Haiti Relief Fund Acc# 822317. If you need further information please send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org or call Debbie at 8918934.
- Visit http://www.jamaicajazzandblues.com and be a part of Turn Key’s efforts to help, or call Carlette DeLeon at Headline Entertainment, Jamaica 8 Haughton Avenue, Kingston 10, Jamaica WI, Tel:876.469.4577,876.754.1526 Fax: 876.906.3634 Or in the United States US : 221 South State Road 7, MB# 4237 Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33317 Tel: 305.748.4602
- Donations to the United Way Disaster Fund can be made at any NCB branch – account #: 061-048-596 you may also deliver donations of kind (canned food, linens, clothing, etc) to any NCB branch.
- The Salvation Army, 3 Waterloo Road (opposite Devon House), items may be donated there or visit http://www1.salvationarmy.org/heritage.nsf/shield.gif