A Year of Healing and Hope

January 9, 2011 • Haiti

Samaritan’s Purse has helped hundreds of thousands of people since the earthquake shook Haiti last January

Many people said they heard a snap, like a heavy tree limb breaking. And then the earth began to rumble.

On January 12, 2010, a massive earthquake shook Haiti. In less than 40 seconds, most of Port-au-Prince was in ruins. More than 100,000 homes and buildings collapsed, hillsides crumbled, roadways buckled, and fissures split the earth.

Over 230,000 people died, and thousands more lay injured amid the rubble of the 7.0 magnitude quake.

The scope of the disaster was overwhelming. Hundreds of thousands of people needed emergency medical aid, food, water, and shelter. But hundreds of Haitian doctors, nurses, firemen, and police were among the dead, hospitals and police stations had collapsed, and more than a million people were left homeless.

Within 24 hours of the disaster, Samaritan’s Purse had personnel on the ground, assessing the critical needs. Emergency medical teams were the first to arrive, but our response quickly escalated into the largest relief and recovery effort in the ministry’s 40-year history.

“Samaritan’s Purse is all about the human connection,” said Matt Ellingson, our Country Director in Haiti. “We are entering into the lives of people in their most critical need.”

Over the last 12 months, Samaritan’s Purse has provided emergency aid and assistance to more than 500,000 people.

“Every person we help, we do it in Jesus’ Name,” Samaritan’s Purse President Franklin Graham said.

Our programs included:

• Provided more than 52,000 people with transitional housing by building 10,436 family shelters in 13 communities
• Constructed 5 community centers in shelter communities

Food & Water
• Distributed 9,180 metric tons of emergency food to more than 345,000 people
• Established feeding programs in 24 schools
• Constructed 1,402 latrines and installed 36 water filtration systems to provide clean water to more than 75,000 people

Medical Care
• Christian doctors, nurses, and medical personnel helped treat more than 9,600 earthquake victims at Baptist Haiti Mission Hospital
• Dispatched more than 500 medical professionals to treat the sick and injured in Haiti
• Treated more than 33,000 people at a community clinic in Cite Soleil and through mobile medical units dispatched to underserved communities

Cholera Response
• Mobilized more than 300 doctors and nurses to help treat over 7,500 cholera patients
• Established three emergency cholera treatment centers, including the construction of a 200-bed medical facility in Cite Soleil
• Distributed more than 500,000 cholera prevention and treatment pamphlets in susceptible communities
• Installed 20 water filters in at-risk communities, each capable of providing 10,000 gallons of clean water daily

Rebuilding & Renewal
• Removed 100,766 cubic meters of rubble to help prepare sites for rebuilding
• Employed more than 6,000 Haitians to assist with rubble removal and shelter construction
• Taught income-generating skills to 489 women through the Women’s Community Learning Group in Cite Soleil

Samaritan’s Purse will continue to provide humanitarian assistance to the Haitian people this year as government leaders work with the international community to help rebuild and restore infrastructure to Port-au-Prince and surrounding communities.

On January 9, Franklin Graham capped off our first year of involvement in Haiti with the Festival of Hope, sharing the Gospel with thousands of people at the National Soccer Stadium in Port-au-Prince.

”We want to do everything we can, not only to help the people of Haiti, but to reach them with the Gospel of Jesus Christ,” he said. “Pray that there will be an outpouring of the Holy Spirit of God upon this nation and upon this people.”

Pray that thousands of people will accept Christ and discover new hope for the future in Haiti.