Friday, 10 August 2012

How You Can Help With Reconstruction After An Earthquake

By Jasmine Cummings

After the devastating 2010 earthquake that left over 300 000 Haitian citizens dead and more than a million without shelter, the island country is still struggling to get back on its feet. The magnitude 7 quake, which mainly impacted on the capital city and surrounding areas, has devastated the country. Despite assistance from international governments, the path is Haiti reconstruction has a long way to go.

Although the epicenter of the quake was in a small town with few residents, the main effects were felt in the densely populated capital city. As well as leaving more than half a million people dead or injured, the quake also destroyed the infrastructure of the city.

Countries across the world pledged their support to provide relief after the quake, and millions of dollars worth of aid was sent to the island. As well as food packages, volunteers were dispatched to assist with the recovery of bodies and rescue of those trapped under rubble. As time went by, the focus of aid efforts changed to re-establishing infrastructure.

A United Nations special envoy was deployed by the United States shortly after the incident to assess the main areas of need in the country and coordinate fund raising for the recovery of the island. The initial priorities were found to be clearing the roads, clearing dead bodies from the streets and re-establishing an effective government structure.

Many of these goals, however, remain undone. 6 months after the disaster, more than 90 percent of the rubble remained on the streets, with untold numbers of bodies hidden beneath it. The capital city become almost inhabitable, and close to a million residents still had no permanent shelter.

Even on 2012, two years after the event, the country is still suffering the after-effects. More than half a million Haitians are still living in relief shelters, and only 46 percent of the aid money promised by the United States has been delivered. By making a small donation or volunteering some time to this cause, every individual can help to assist in haiti Reconstruction.

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