In the face of serious losses in Haiti after Tropical Storm Isaac crossed the country on August 24, The United Church of Canada has committed an initial $15,000 toward relief work that is being carried out by the global ACT Alliance of churches and faith-based aid organizations.
Ten ACT member organizations in Haiti are assessing damage and needs in every region of Haiti. By August 28, 19 deaths and six disappeared persons had been reported by Civil Protection. Particularly affected are people in tent-camps and in vulnerable rural regions. There are also reports of severe flooding, loss of livestock, and severe damage to agriculture and infrastructure (including houses and schools). New outbreaks of cholera have been reported by the World Health Organization and the Lutheran World Federation.
Haiti is highly vulnerable to natural disasters such as hurricanes and storms. Both urban and rural areas are still recovering from the 2010 earthquake. Although the loss of lives has so far been less than the government expected, cholera still prevails in the country and there are risks of exacerbation in the days and weeks after the impact of the tropical storm.
The United Church’s South America/Caribbean regional program coordinator, Jim Hodgson, will visit Haitian partners from September 3 to 9.
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