As a development organization, we are typically focused on efforts that will procure long-term sustainable solutions. We believe strongly that a development approach is the most effective way to help Haiti to thrive.
However, we still are driven with a humanitarian mission and there are times when we need to pivot our efforts to ensure the well-being of the Haitian people.
In response to the earthquake that struck the southwest region of Haiti, and the subsequent tsunami that gravely impacted thousands of people, we have pivoted our efforts to provide aid in the following ways:
1). Medical Mission:
We sent a medical team to serve. See the full story here.
2) Logistical Support to Local Government:
The local authorities needed an immediate way to communicate and coordinate response efforts. Haiti Outreach gave minutes to all 36 local authorities in Cavaillon to help facilitate their communication needs.
3). Water Distribution:
Haiti Outreach provided two water distribution trucks for weeks following the earthquake. In total we delivered over 124,000 gallons of water to households.
4) Water System Evaluation:
Our team also worked with the DINEPA/OREPA team to evaluate all the water systems in the three departments surrounding the affected area. In total 34 temporary shelters and 58 water systems were evaluated.
5). National Capacity Building:
In addition, our capacity building allowed the national water agency (DINEPA-ONEPA) to be able to effectively use mWater to manage the response to the earthquake. Two days after the earthquake they had Haiti Outreach support in creating surveys, consoles and dashboards for managing and coordinating the response. This is available here: French and English
5). Local Capacity Building:
Prior to the earthquake, we maintained a presence in the South due to our partnership with the Rotary HANWASH initiative in the commune of Cavaillon (near the epicenter).
There we are working with the local authorities on their action plan to develop access to WASH services for every household, which is anticipated to be 88 wells and the repair of 5 water systems. As part of this partnership, we had just completed training of the first 7 community wells and inaugurated 4 in the commune prior to the quake.
Of the 315 houses in these seven villages, 303 were destroyed. Fortunately, the main water system and all Haiti Outreach wells remained functional as every spring within 500m of these villages stopped flowing.
6). Direct Assistance:
In the seven communities where we have relationships, we are organizing direct cash payments to each household. This is made possible because of the detailed census each community undertakes as part of the Haiti Outreach management training. For now, each household is receiving a $50 cash payment to ensure their basic needs are met.