January 12, 2010 will be one of those days that the people of Haiti will always remember. Already the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere and the third poorest in the world, on that day a massive earthquake struck the country and in less than one minute 300,000 people lost their lives, 100,00 plus were injured, 200,000 buildings were destroyed and over 1,500,000 people were left homeless.
As I attended a memorial service last night, the thought crossed my mind that in the very building I was sitting, 39 people lost their lives just two short years ago. The building is back holding services and tonight there were over 400 people in attendance. The new tile floors are beautiful and the Haitian colors are starting to cover the walls. The school now has over 400 students and about 150 nursing students have returned to learn how to care for the sick.
Healing Hands International responded to this disaster within one week and you donated over $2,000,000 for the people of Haiti. HHI has been instrumental in building schools, orphanages, churches, clinics, hospitals and homes in and around Port au Prince.
With your generous donations we have been able to deliver over 500,000 pounds of food. We were one of the first NGO’S to deliver water purification systems when Cholera struck the nation. We were also able to get a container of medicine to those in need.
The rebuilding process is in full swing. As of today, the tent cities are starting to be relocated to areas where there are homes available. Streets are being cleaned and trees are replacing piles of rubble. There are still about 500,000 in tents or temporary shelters.
We have been involved in putting people to work in making blocks for rebuilding homes, as well as providing sewing machines to those who complete a training course. A bakery is being built and should be operational by March 1, 2012. Schools are packed with children eager to get an education. We built a school in an area where there was no school to attend for miles, and it is a blessing to the community.
Water wells have been drilled all over the disaster area and people that had to walk miles before the earthquake to get water now have it near to where they live.
We know God is alive in all of this, because every church that we have worked with has had considerable growth in the past two years.
We ask that you continue to pray for the work in Haiti and please do not forget the Haitians when making donations in 2012.
May God continue to bless you.
Director of Haiti Operations