Earthquake Strikes Haiti August 14, 2021

Catastrophe After the Earthquake

Many people are wondering why can't Haiti catch a break. Haitians have been overwhelmed by a series of catastrophic and tragic events piling on top of each other. A new disaster strikes, one after another, before the country can heal, rebuild, and move past the previous one. Haiti is still rebuilding from the massive earthquake that struck 11 years ago and dealing with the fallout of its president’s assassination in July. The island nation was ill-prepared for the magnitude 7.2 earthquake that hit its western region on August 14th. Houses were crumbled into pieces and many people were trapped under the rubble. On August 14th it was reported that more than 12,000 people were injured and more than 2,000 people had been killed, a number that officials expected to rise. At least two cities reported major devastation: Les Cayes and Jeremie. Phone lines were down in Petit Trou de Nippes, the epicenter of the quake, and no news emerged immediately from that city, leaving Haitian officials to fear for the worst. A landslide, triggered by the quake, cut off access to the road to Jeremie. Complicating rescue efforts Tropical Storm Grace passed through the area within the same week. A tool built by the U.S. Geological Survey suggests that the number of fatalities may range from 10,000 to 100,000 or more.

 Disaster after disaster has pummeled Haiti

Written By Joe Hernandez 
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Talk to enough people about this island nation, and you'll hear a common refrain: Why can't Haiti catch a break? For one, it is among the most vulnerable areas in the world to climate change. In 2010, an earthquake rocked the nation, killing 220,000 people and displacing 1.5 million. The earthquake recovery effort had its own problems: Hundreds of millions of aid dollars went unaccounted for, and at least 10,000 people in Haiti died from cholera that was brought into the country by aid workers. Later, in 2016, Hurricane Matthew clobbered the country, killing 600 people and displacing tens of thousands of residents. Haiti also suffers from chronic political instability. In recent years, Haiti saw massive political protests against then-President Jovenel Moïse, an unchecked crime wave, and a sluggish response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Then, in July, Moïse was killed by gunmen in the presidential palace in an assassination that remains under investigation. A new Haitian government that is just getting off the ground after Moïse's assassination must now confront a major natural disaster, an overwhelming task for any administration.

Haitian Americans are making desperate calls to find out if their loved ones are safe.

Written By Sophie Kasakove
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When Gepsie Metellus got the news from a cousin, on the Saturday morning of August 14th, that a powerful earthquake had rocked Haiti, she made a panicked call from her home in Miami to her husband, who had traveled to Port-au-Prince on Thursday for a visit. As she dialed his number, her thoughts returned in terror to the 7.0-magnitude earthquake that devastated Haiti 11 years ago. She was able to contact her husband, who was safe, but for some, the agony of not knowing the fate of their loved ones continued through the day. Members of the Haitian diaspora in the United States spoke on Saturday of making anxious calls to relatives and friends in the Caribbean nation. U.S.-based aid organizations were struggling to assess the scope of the damage and connect with their people on the ground. Commissioner Jean Monestime of Miami-Dade County said he had fielded calls all day from constituents desperately trying to reach family members in Haiti.“People are still in disbelief that Haiti is experiencing yet another disaster,” he said, adding that he and other Haitian Americans elected officials were working to organize response efforts. For those watching anxiously from the U.S., the political turbulence in the weeks following the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse of Haiti raised additional concerns about the prospect of recovery from Saturday’s earthquake.“All this against the backdrop of a country where gangs are running amok, a country with no functioning government,” said Ms. Metellus, adding, “Everyone’s feeling this collective sense of anxiety, of frustration, of fear, of déjà vu.”

 The Institution Mixte de Regnier Before and After the Earthquake

( The photo above and the information below was taken directly from ACR's website)
The Institution Mixte de Regnier is a school in Haiti that has been sponsored by the Association for the Children of Regnier (ACR), a nonprofit organization established in the United States, since 1995.  Since its founding, the organization has dedicated itself to improving the quality of life of the unfortunate children of the region.
Institution Mixte de Regnier Before the Earthquake

Institution Mixte de Regnier After the Earthquake

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