7.0 EARTHQUAKE hits Port-au-Prince, Jan. 12, 2010!


Haiti was hit by a incredible natural disaster. Given Haiti’s high vulnerability — lack of infrastructure and poverty — the earthquake is causing innumerable damage. Including 100,000 lives, by some estimates! The international community must come to their aid IMMEDIATELY. As a Haitian proverb states, “Men anpil, chay pa lou”. (With hands together, the burden is light). Now is the time to put our hands together for Haiti.

Despite billions in promised aid, most has failed to materialize. Haiti's 1.5 million people in the camps are living in subhuman conditions, violations of their human rights. See the full report, nine months after the earthquake: Report: Unstable Foundations (PDF)

For more information and analysis of earthquake relief efforts people can visit co-director Mark Schuller's blog on Huffington Post. For a more updated site listing other news stories, visit partner Center for Economic and Policy Research “Reconstruction Watch” blog.

UPDATE: Thérèse is still at her home, under doctor’s orders to remain home because her high blood pressure increased because of the stress of the earthquake. Solange is still in Cité Soleil, still engaged in community organizing while welcoming her first grand-daughter, born three weeks after the earthquake. Hélène and Frisline are now in their second camp. Frisline moved because of security reasons and Hélène was relocated with half of her camp. Hélène is one of the central committee members in her camp. Marie-Jeanne was injured when a concrete wall fell on her and went to her hometown to heal. She is now back on her feet, working, and living in a makeshift camp near her old home.

Please visit our partners’ websites to donate and give immediate relief to earthquake victims:

Beginning March 1, 2010, people can directly support the grassroots groups involved in the film. Lambi Fund is our fiscal agent and none of the funds will go for overhead. Groups to receive funds are directly involved with the film, based on several discussions in Haiti with the women and the groups. Most are grassroots; some offer direct support to women of Haiti’s poor majority. Since this film has been in Port-au-Prince, this network is focused in the city, particularly popular neighborhoods, all areas affected by the earthquake.

People who would like to contribute can write a check to Lambi Fund with “Poto Mitan” on the memo line and send to:

Attn: Poto Mitan
Lambi Fund of Haiti
PO Box 18955
Washington, DC 20036

There are many other organizations that are offering immediate relief. When choosing a group to donate to, please consider the following:

  1. Who, exactly, is on the ground delivering aid in Port-au-Prince? How do they select partners and leaders within these groups?
  2. What is the group’s capacity to get aid to Haiti and directly to the impacted groups?
  3. What relationships do they have with the community and community groups? Who sets the priorities? Do they have long-term partnerships or are they grasping at straws in the — understandable — need to do something?
  4. What percent of funds will actually get to Haiti? What percent is overhead?
  5. What is the plan? Does it address the current needs (medical first, food, water and shelter)?
  6. If there is a group donating to local partners, and you can donate directly to the local partners, donate directly to the local group (though you may need to through a 501(c)(3) group like Lambi Fund, Fonkoze, or Vanguard Public Foundation).
  7. For more information read these articles: Starfish and Seawalls and Earthquake Scam Artists

Remember that once people’s emergency medical needs have been addressed, the disaster will be far from over. Long term food, water, and shelter will still be life-and-death matters.

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