Haiti: rebuilding after Tropical Storm Isaac
A Haitian woman whose house was flooded sits with the items she was able to salvage. [REUTERS/Swoan Parker, courtesy of alertnet]
We’re helping people in Jacmel in the south of Haiti to recover after the town was devastated by a tropical storm
On the night of 24 August, heavy rain and winds of up to 100kph hit the town of Jacmel on the south coast of Haiti, knocking over trees, ripping roofs off houses and causing severe flooding that killed animals and ruined large tracts of farmland. People still living in tents after the 2010 earthquake could only watch as their shelters were washed away.
Within hours, our local partner Caritas Jacmel responded to the emergency, providing hot food for people who’d been made homeless. Today, we’re working with Caritas Jacmel to:
- Repair roofs on 100 damaged houses
- Run “cash-for-work” projects, in which people who’ve lost everything are paid to remove debris and clear roads
- Ensure that children can stay in school, by providing books and pens to replace those that were washed away and by contributing towards school fees for the worst hit families.
Sarah Marsh, our Programme Officer for Haiti, said: “Ever since the earthquake hit Haiti in 2010, as well as helping people recover from the devastation, we’ve been working in places like Jacmel to make sure people are better prepared for disasters. We’ve trained farmers to create natural defences against landslides, and we’ve worked with local engineers to build houses that can withstand hurricanes and earthquakes.
“But millions of people in Haiti are still living in temporary shelters or poor quality housing – so a storm like this one can cause serious damage. Our partners are helping the worst affected people in Jacmel to get back on their feet quickly. Crucially, we’re also making sure that, despite the disaster, children can still go to school.”