by Rev. Vernon Giesbrecht
Dear friend of Double Harvest,
July 12th marked the six month anniversary of the devastating earthquake that rocked the country of Haiti. In the capital city of Port-au-Prince and for hundreds of miles around, buildings were flattened, thousands of lives were lost, hundreds of individuals were severely injured, the already shaky infrastructure was compromised, and the government was essentially immobilized. Organizations and individuals from around the world responded with an outpouring of medical, relief and financial aid. After six months, however, little has changed for those affected by the tragedy. Most of the buildings destroyed or damaged in Port-au-Prince (60%) still lie in rubble. The Presidential Palace, the worldwide symbol of the destruction, remains “a gleaming heap of rubble” (USA Today). For the 1.5 million left homeless, many are still living in makeshift camps, while those who left the city for shelter and food in their hometowns are returning to nothing, their “cousins” resources depleted. Hurricanes threaten at this time of year and tropical storms have already swept away a few refugee tent cities. Frustration is growing over the slow pace of recovery. For too many, basic needs remain unmet, especially “hope”!
There are however glimmers of hope as smaller organizations are coming to the aid of their immediate communities. By the grace of God and the generosity of so many people, Double Harvest is engaged in continuing relief efforts. While the farm, school and clinic have returned to normal activity, an addition to the clinic is under construction. It will serve initially as a prosthetic fitting center for those who lost limbs. Later, it will house eye and dental care facilities as well as an expanded laboratory. In the surrounding villages, new houses are springing up through our Homes for Haiti rebuilding effort. Recent projects on-site have included patching and painting classroom walls, a disturbing reminder to students of the traumatic events. Also, work progresses on a renovated building to serve as a cafeteria for our farm workers. You are “helping us help” the Haitian people at this critical time in their history. We thank you!
A NEW BROCHURE IS AVAILABLE ON OUR “HAITI EARTHQUAKE RELIEF RESPONSE”. IF YOU DID NOT RECEIVE A COPY PLEASE LET US KNOW AND INCLUDE YOUR CURRENT MAILING INFORMATION.
Rev. Vernon Giesbrecht