It has been 4 years and $billions spent on the recovery of Haiti after The Earthquake. Yet Haitians have been left languishing in tented camps, without the promised rebuilt neighborhoods and new infrastructure. Living in now-shredded tents. Schools, temporary without buildings – under open air tents. Feeding programs, not grocers. Refugees, not communities. When it rains the water rushes across their feet, through tents, schools, clinics and possessions – everything. The cholera epidemic that was brought to Haiti by UN aid workers still lingers and the Haitian people have been denied justice and compensation by the UN.
Update, PBS story from January 13, 2014 – 8 min. You should listen to the plight, the numbers, the calloused fumbling UN: Listened to Haitians blame UN soldiers for cholera crisis in wake of earthquake disaster from PBS NewsHour Podcast | PBS @Stitcher http://www.stitcher.com/s?eid=31683616
…gangbuster growth, hoped for as the country rebuilds itself after the earthquake of January 12th 2010 that wrecked the capital, Port-au-Prince, and killed tens of thousands of people, has failed to materialise. – The Economist
Below is from a NYT article and photo that is several months old.
“More than half of the money has gone to relief aid, which saves lives and alleviates misery but carries high costs and leaves no permanent footprint — tents shred; emergency food and water gets consumed; short-term jobs expire; transitional shelters, clinics and schools are not built to last.
Meanwhile, just a sliver of the total disbursement — $215 million — has been allocated to the most obvious and pressing need: safe, permanent housing. By comparison, an estimated minimum of $1.2 billion has been eaten up by short-term solutions — the tent camps, temporary shelters and cash grants that pay a year’s rent.
This represents a marked deflation of the lofty ambitions that followed the disaster, when the world aspired not only to repair Haiti but to remake it completely. The new pragmatism signals an acknowledgment that despite billions of dollars spent — and billions more allocated for Haiti but unspent — rebuilding has barely begun and 357,785 Haitians still languish in 496 tent camps.” – The New York Times
It seems that we have again thrown money at organizations and left them unaccountable. Ignoring the true plight of an impoverished people and the opportunity to lift them to a better future.
The Economist: Still Waiting for Recovery “Three years after a devastating earthquake, the “Republic of NGOs” has become the country of the unemployed”
Note: The articles are old ones, about a year. Given a tropical storm, the past recovery efforts, lack of headlines and special reports from Al Jazeera – I conclude that little has changed, if not worsened for the Haitian people devasted by The Earthquake. The rubble removal has been reported to be “complete”. At least for the central urban area. The surrounding areas and countryside struggle unseen.