The magnitude of the natural disaster that has struck the island of Haiti is increasing by the hour, but we already know that we are facing a major crisis.
As this press release is being published, more than 840 people have been killed by the hurricane's passage over the small island of Haiti. According to the UN's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, more than 21,000 people have been evacuated and 350,000 need immediate humanitarian assistance. Some 25 percent of Haiti's territory has been ravaged by the hurricane, which has destroyed more than 29,000 homes just in the southern part of the island. In the town of Jérémie, capital of the southern department of Grand'Anse with about 30,000 inhabitants, 80 percent of the buildings have been razed to the ground.
Development and Peace is already working with several of its partners to assess how the hurricane has affected the local population, especially the most vulnerable, but D[&]P is requesting right away the support of Canadians to help deal with this new drama. Many of our partners have already confirmed that prevention measures developed in response to previous disasters have saved lives.
Caritas Haiti and Caritas Internationalis have launched an emergency appeal for immediate humanitarian assistance for which Development and Peace has already committed $50,000. Development and Peace's intervention with the Caritas network will enable it to take charge of supporting 2,700 of the families victimized by the hurricane with food distribution, and will reduce the risk of spreading basic infectious diseases (diarrhea, cholera, malaria, etc.) for those 2,700 families.
However, Development and Peace is mobilizing its network and launching an emergency campaign for Haiti. Funds raised will be used to meet needs in health, water, and to provide shelter, food and non-food items in the most affected regions.
Development and Peace is accepting donations to support its efforts and is appealing to the generosity of all Canadians.
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