16 days since the earthquake! Has it been that long? Days run together with short nights and little sleep. First there was the numbing reality of the situation, almost like a nightmarish dream you couldn’t wake up from. I think I had a bit of denial of the reality that the earthquake really happened. Yet there was no escape from the shocking reality that it was true. The destruction and death was everywhere and reported death totals were grossly under estimated. The death totals are much higher than realized. For the people who ask me how I know this, my response is simple; “Where are all the people?” There were approximately 3 million people in PAP before the earthquake, 60 to 70% were left homeless, I ask again. Where are all those people now?
By the approach of the second week I was asked to serve on a committee for the organization of the refugees that were expected to flood into the city of St. Marc. We planned, we prepared but no one came. Again, where are all the people? Refugees are reported to be in big numbers in Cap Haitien, Gonaives, but in St. Marc, which is actually located closer to Port Au Prince than either of these two cities, we’ve had no massive wave of refugees. After a week of registering victims in St. Marc that are staying in homes and churches, we have located 3000. We are still registering refugees and feel there maybe as many as 4000 to 6000 currently in the city. With over 2.5 million people left homeless, where are all the people?
We are finding in PAP groupings of people in fields, streets, and city parks. They are lost; no shelter, no supplies, still trying to figure out what to do. Thank God it is the dry season. Left out in the elements during rainy season would only have led to more deaths! These victims don’t know where to go or how to get anywhere. Many are too fearful to enter their homes to retrieve precious goods, money, or legal documents due to the continued after shocks that are still felt, yes even today.
We have been scrambling to formulate plans and preparations to receive these victims that are left in PAP but with no leadership or structure, it has been difficult to accomplish a lot quickly. Yet, help is on the way! Some would be content to let the need go unanswered, but we feel a call to proclaim that this is the hour for change and we must respond! In St. Marc, YWAM has linked with the local administration, non- governmental organizations, private foundations, churches and the UN to ready the local schools as temporary housing for those who are still sleeping in parks and streets in PAP. Currently there is a ship scheduled to arrive Monday, Feb. 1st, at the St. Marc port. This shipment brings 43,000lbs of rice, a 40′ trailer of assorted food and equipment and two 20′ trailers to assist an orphanage with food and materials to make repairs. Currently, in St. Marc, churches are being funded to feed hundreds of people daily. A once gutted and retired hospital has been re-enforced and repaired and our first medical team aided the sick just this past week.
In PAP we have located land to develop temporary communities that we will be ministering in for many days to come until the city is rebuilt and they are back on their feet. Our YWAM medical teams are treating 300 plus a day in front of the National Palace. They are also strategizing on the lay out temporary communities and ways to further assist as they transfer from a crisis team to a relief team. By this weekend we will have
130 plus volunteers working in PAP, St. Marc, and Gonaives!
Right now we are assembling tents, 16x14ft., to be shipped in. We have 200 ordered and a team of people coming to set them up. Each tent will cost approximately $300 USD which includes shipping. The first batch of tents could arrive as early as Feb. 10th. We plan to house people in schools and churches until then. The plan is to ship another order of tents directly following this first order. We need your help to get these tents here as quickly as possible. The order was placed in faith as we know they are needed and God will hold back the rains for only so long. By giving to YWAM Haiti “Relief” you will be contributing to see these tents purchased, delivered, and set up to provide temporary shelter for one to two years!
Let us know today if you can help make this possible! Below is the information on where you could send your funds to see this effort advanced.
Taking the High Places!
Terry W. Snow
If you would like to help you could send a US Dollar contribution payable to YWAM Haiti “Relief: and mail to;
PO Box 236
Akron, PA 17501
If you would like to send funds through the internet you may give through this link;