Haiti: One Year After the Earthquake

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

In Port-au-Prince today, The Salvation Army and Haitian citizens are gathering for a very special remembrance ceremony to mark the one-year anniversary of an earthquake the world will not soon forget.

The Salvation Army continues to work with the nation throughout the rebuilding process. To learn more about the ongoing efforts in the island nation, we caught up with Major Ron Busroe, Director of Haiti’s Recovery and Development Office. He and his wife first served in Haiti from 2001-2007. In response to the earthquake, they’ve been appointed to serve three more years.

Read on for a broad overview of The Salvation Army’s work and issues shaping those efforts.

For our latest statistics and program highlights, view our Haiti One Year Anniversary Fact Sheet at www.salvationarmyusa.org.

General Updates

The Salvation Army’s efforts in Haiti have progressed from the emergency response phase to the recovery and development phase. The Haiti Development and Recovery Office was established as of September 1 to oversee and guide these long-term recovery efforts, such as renovating schools and buildings as well as providing for the emotional and spiritual care of survivors.

In addition, the contract that established us as the “lead-agency” overseeing the temporary camp in the Delmas 2 neighborhood expired October 31. While The Salvation Army no longer manages the camp, our personnel remain involved and regularly meet with the camp committee. Much of our effort within this population goes toward cholera prevention.

The Salvation Army Haiti intends to move into a new Divisional Headquarters this month as their facility was destroyed in the earthquake. They also plan to rebuild their clinic this year, and perhaps even a warehouse, as storage space is a rare commodity in Haiti.

Housing and Permanent Shelter

It was estimated that around 20,000 displaced Haitians were living in the Delmas 2 neighborhood’s tent city near The Salvation Army’s main compound following the earthquake. Major Busroe estimates the number has dissipated now to somewhere just below 13,000 as people move out to the country. However, it’s been much more difficult for people wanting to start over within the city.

“Following the earthquake we’re seeing limited construction in city of Port-au-Prince. There’s some small construction, but few houses are being built. The rubble’s not removed so they can’t build, ” he explained, adding that the government’s weakened state and hurdles to verifying land ownership also inhibit progress. Reports indicate that after a year, less than 5% of the city’s rubble has been removed.

So Haitians’ only choices are to move and face the struggles of rural life (lack of access to clean water, medical services, business opportunities, education, and more) or continue to stay in their makeshift shelters.

Major Busroe says the Haitian government is encouraging NGO’s to build up resources within the rural communities in an effort to encourage people to relocate and help decongest the city. It’s a plan Major Busroe says The Salvation Army supports, though much of their service has already been focused on reaching the underserved outside the city even before the earthquake.

Cholera

While cholera is still a serious threat to the people of Haiti, the mortality rate is on the decline. In general, those under The Salvation Army’s care have fared relatively well against the outbreak, although 4 female students from one of our schools perished when the epidemic first struck.

The Salvation Army is aggressively working to educate against, prevent, and treat further infection. In addition to providing water filtration systems in key areas, Major Busroe reported they’re distributing soap, disinfectant, oral rehydration packets, and antibiotics within the temporary camp and to medical facilities. In addition, The Salvation Army hospital in Fond-de-Negres set up a cholera treatment center at the request of the government, which has been filled with patients. The hospital is looking to set up an alternate site.

Schools and Services

The Salvation Army runs 49 schools in Haiti with approx. 11,000 students enrolled. All but one of those schools, College Verena in Port-au-Prince, continue to operate following the earthquake. College Verena has been combined with another school and reconstruction efforts are expected to continue within the next year.

23 temporary classrooms have already been built and will officially open today as a part of the one-year remembrance ceremony. More than 1500 children will be able to attend classes there, broken up into a morning session for primary students and afternoon session for secondary students.

With the help of Numana, The Salvation Army hopes to one day serve meals in most of their rural schools. “We feel if we can provide a meal everyday at schools, that’s the best way of getting kids into school and getting people to leave the city to come to country,” said Major Busroe.

In addition to bolstering schools and school programs, The Salvation Army Haiti is looking into providing other long term services for the community in general, such as adolescent care, integrated family support, and vocational training, with the help of The Salvation Army in Canada, Switzerland, and other International Divisions.

For our latest statistics and program highlights, view our Haiti One Year Anniversary Fact Sheet at www.salvationarmyusa.org.

Read More

Numana Reaches 20 Million Meals for Haiti

Monday, June 28, 2010

Hunger relief organization Numana, Inc. has packaged 20 MILLION MEALS for Haiti Disaster Relief, according to the organization’s official press announcement released Saturday. The latest milestone was reached this weekend as volunteers from across the Midwest banded together at Numana community events held in Fayettville, AR, Milwaukee, WI and Pratt, KS.

In their statement the relief organization said, “Numana would like to thank first of all the thousands of people who have shown up to give of their money, energy and time to help make this happen. Rick McNary, Founder and CEO said, “We knew that if we provided people with the opportunity, they would respond overwhelmingly, and they have.” The Salvation Army deserves a special thanks as they have helped facilitate nearly half of all the meals packaged.

Fayetteville’s ‘Razorback Relief’ packaged a record 1.4 million meals in 24 hours, breaking the previous record held by Kansas City of 1.2 million. Milwaukee produced an impressive 573,000 meals, and Pratt turned out 276,00!

Thank you to everyone for your helping hands that together have made an incredible difference in the lives of Haiti’s starving population. For more information about Numana and how to be involved in upcoming events, visit their website at www.numanainc.com. You can also follow them on Twitter for the latest information and statistics @NumanaInc.

And sure to visit The Salvation Army online at www.salvationarmyusa.org for news of our ongoing service, as well as on Facebook and Twitter.

Read More

Volunteers Help Salvation Army Show Continuous Care for Haiti

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

News of Haiti’s ongoing recovery has slipped from the headlines, but the country’s need has not disappeared. Despite this drop in media attention, The Salvation Army and volunteers continue to devote countless man hours to serving earthquake survivors.

Just this past weekend hundreds of individuals from Kalamazoo, MI and the surrounding area gathered at an old Sam’s Club warehouse where they packaged 620,784 meals for Haiti over a period of two days. The event was hosted by hunger relief organization Numana, Inc. and The Salvation Army. A photo run by the Kalamazoo Gazette showed a grown man and a four year-old boy working together in the assembly-line style packing process. Though the picture may at first appear unremarkable, the sharp contrast of this seemingly mismatched pair captures the unique sense of unity and passion to help that bonds an otherwise diverse group of volunteers. Kalamazoo proved to have a great turn out of helping hands!

You would expect with it being more than five months following the earthquake, public interest would fade. But Numana hosts widely-attended meal packing events like the one in Kalamazoo every week across the country in order that The Salvation Army will have a continuous supply of food to distribute to Haitian survivors. Actually, three separate events will be taking place this weekend in Kansas, Wisconsin, and Arkansas, with Arkansas attempting to set a record of packing 2 million meals during a first-ever 24 consecutive hour event! It actually seems like the public’s desire to help is gaining steam.

Numana founder Rick McNary told the Kalamazoo Gazette that in the five months since the earthquake more than 18 million meals have been packaged for Haiti through Numana’s partnership with The Salvation Army and volunteers across the country!

The Salvation Army is incredibly thankful for the help of Numana and all the compassionate volunteers who continue to diligently give their time, efforts, and resources for those in need in Haiti, even after the overwhelming need no longer makes news headlines!

For more information about The Salvation Army in Kalamazoo, visit their website at www.tsakalamazoo.org or find them on Facebook.

You can also learn more about Numana, Inc. through their website www.numanainc.com.

Read More

Memorial Day Weekend

Friday, May 28, 2010

Happy Memorial Day Weekend! As we recognize those who gave their lives in service to our nation, do you plan to participate in any events taking place around your community? The Salvation Army will be out and about, so make plans to join us!

Here are just a few of the many ways The Salvation Army will be serving others and recognizing Memorial Day:

San Francisco Bay Area, California – Since 1924, The Salvation Army has held an annual Memorial Day service at Cypress Lawn to honor our fallen soldiers. They will continue the tradition this Sunday, when they’ll remember service members with song, prayer, scripture, and an inspirational message. Click here for more info on this and other area events.

Nashville, Tennessee – Member s of the community are invited to honor veterans and their families at the National Cemetery on Memorial Day, where food and beverages will be served throughout the day. Visitors are welcome to share their war and Salvation Army service stories.

Davenport, Iowa – The Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Center (ARC) will take members of its recovery program for a fun day at the county park, where they’ll be able to relax with their families and grill out. Plus, members of the Salvation Army’s Des Moines ARC will also join and challenge Davenport in a friendly game of softball.

Kodiak, Alaska – During the annual Kodiak Crab Festival, The Salvation Army will team up with the local fire department to serve delicious homemade doughnuts to festival attendees. They estimate that they’ll make and serve about 1,500 doughnuts!

Seattle, Washington – On Saturday and Sunday The Salvation Army will sponsor a community volunteer event at the State Convention Center to pack a million meals for Haiti earthquake survivors. Just a few hours of your time can make a huge difference for those in need. Follow the link to volunteer: http://salvationarmynw.org/haiti/ .

Read More

Phildelphia Eagles Doing the Most Good – Come Help Them!

Friday, May 21, 2010

We’ve been posting a lot recently about our partnering with hunger relief organization Numana, Inc. to host community meal packing events around the country for Haiti earthquake survivors. Yes, even four months after the disaster, much help is still needed and will continue to be needed for a long time.

Today, May 21, and tomorrow, May 22, volunteers will gather in Philadelphia at Drexel University to help The Salvation Army prepare 1 million meals. We we will ship and distribute the food to the 20,000 displaced Haitians that we are caring for in Port-au-Prince. We’re looking for 5,000 volunteers to make this possible, so if you want to get involved, register online at www.SalvationArmyPhiladelphia.org. We need your help!!

And we think it’s pretty cool that the Philadelphia Eagles are partnering with us for this event! This afternoon Eagles guard and Haiti native Max Jean-Gilles, Eagles linebacker Akeem Jordan and Eagles employees will be volunteering in our effort to provide nutritious meals to earthquake survivors.

Come out and lend a hand for a few hours while making a big difference in the lives of those in need. Here are some important links for more information including the event’s address and important FAQ:

* The Salvation Army Philadelphia’s Website -www.SalvationArmyPhiladelphia.org/millionmeals
* Facebook – SalvationArmyPhiladelphia
* Twitter – @SalArmyPhilly

Read More

Hey, Northwest! Here’s Your Opportunity to Help Haiti

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

[Million Meal Event]
Photo: The Salvation Army Western Territory

As The Salvation Army continues our relief work in Haiti following January’s earthquake, we need 2,000 volunteers to help us prepare more meals for earthquake survivors.

The Salvation Army and Numana Inc. will be hosting another Million Meals Packing event next weekend in Seattle, Washington on Saturday, May 29 and Sunday, May 30 at the Washington State Convention Center.

You and your friends are invited to the packing party, where you will prepare bags of vitamin-fortified rice, beans and vegetables. One bag is enough to feed a family of six! The work required is simple, but it’s a great time and your efforts will go a long way in benefiting the lives of others in need.

*If you’re in the Seattle area and ready to volunteer a few hours of your time, visit The Salvation Army Northwest Division’s registration page at http://www.salvationarmynw.org/haiti for more information.*

For fun photos of past events, check out The Salvation Army Western Territory’s Flickr page here.

Read More

Looking for Volunteers in Chicago

Monday, May 17, 2010

The Salvation Army and Numana, Inc.’s next community meal packing event for Haiti relief will take place in the Chicago, IL area (Melrose Park) this coming weekend on Saturday, May 22 and Sunday, May 23rd.

If you can spare just a few hours to help earthquake survivors, register online and come lend a hand! Volunteers across the country have already packed more than 10 million meals for Haiti, and we hope to prepare 1 million more this weekend with your help!

We are partnering with Navistar and will be holding the event at their 10400 W. North Avenue, Melrose Park, IL location.

For more information or to register for the event, visit The Salvation Army Chicago’s website at http://www.salarmychicago.org/volunteer/ or call 773-205-3636.

View the below video from Chicago’s WGN News for information about another Salvation Army and Numana Meals for Haiti event that took place recently in Elgin, IL.

["allowFullScreen":"true","allowScriptAccess":"always","src":"http://www.youtube.com/v/2qh6fEr-cmg&color1=0xb1b1b1&color2=0xd0d0d0&hl=en_US&feature=player_embedded&fs=1","allowfullscreen":"true"]

Read More

Strong Turn Out in Syracuse for Haiti Hunger Relief

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

What do you get when you combine more than 2,600 Syracuse volunteers, Numana, and The Salvation Army? Apparently, 867,858 meals for Haiti!

In another one of our Numana community meal packing events for earthquake survivors, citizens of the greater Syracuse, NY area really wowed us by showing up in unexpected numbers and helping us far exceed our expected goal for the event! Individuals of all ages and backgrounds turned out, including a couple and their two 5 year old boys who they just recently adopted from Haiti.

Read the story about Saturday’s event HERE at The Salvation Army Eastern Territory’s website.

Numana’s website lists upcoming meal event locations and dates at www.numanainc.com.

Read More

10,000,000!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

If you’ve been following The Salvation Army’s relief efforts in Haiti you know that we’ve partnered with Numana, a hunger relief organization, and tens of thousands of volunteers from around the country to pack and ship nutritious and simple meals for earthquake survivors.

Here’s some exciting news:

We’ve reached ten million – 10,000,000 – meals for Haiti since January’s earthquake!

This weekend at multiple events around the country, San Francisco, CA saw more than 1 million meals prepared in one day, volunteers in Champaign-Urbana, IL also packaged 1 million meals, and New London, CT put together 269,016 meals ready to be shipped.

That’s amazing, and we couldn’t do it without the help of our volunteers! If you would like to volunteer at upcoming events or learn more information about Numana, visit their website at www.numanainc.com.

Read More