January 17, 2010
How Evangelical Relief Agencies Are Reaching Haiti
Groups continue to work on the ground.
First, their plane could not land in Port-au-Prince; they rerouted to the north part of Haiti. Then their first vehicle broke down. Twenty-four hours after landing, Dr. Dan Diamond’s team reached the UN field hospital – and found no operating room.
We started out by going to the UN field hospital to tell them that we thought we had a workable solution for the lack of operating rooms.... Without functioning operating rooms many of these people will be dead in a matter of days. Tomorrow we are going to do what we can to get ours open at King's Hospital.
Diamond, a volunteer with Medical Teams International, coordinated medical emergency response in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. He blogs from Haiti about the challenges of bringing aid to a land in chaos.
“We are not here for the dead, but for the living”
Duane Zook’s audio report for Global Aid Network as he walks around Port-au-Prince describes the death and destruction, but he says, “We are here not for the dead, but for the living.”
Global Aid Network had prepositioned food and shoes in Haiti at the end of 2009 in preparation for a future hurricane. But finding a way to distribute 1 million meals could be difficult, as well as finding a port to receive the eight containers Campus Crusade for Christ is waiting to ship.
Peter Elliot at everydaychristian.com interviewed Zook about disaster preparedness, the steps agencies must go through to assist in any disaster, and how the damage in Haiti compares to New Orleans.
Supplies for the living, searching for the missing, comforting the dying
Samaritan’s Purse's (SP) chief medical officer, Dr. David Gettle, says their goal is to “protect those who are out in the open.” Over the weekend, a DC-6 filled with their blankets, plastic sheeting for shelters, flashlights, water filtration systems, hygiene kits and jerry cans landed in Port-au-Prince.
SP Disaster Assistance Response Team is working with the only operating radio station in Port-au-Prince to find missing persons on a list SP is compiling. American ex-pats can listen at 9 a.m. every morning as staff read the names of missing people that are received at their headquarters in Boone, N.C. The team in Haiti has phone number for people to call if they are okay.
Billy Graham Rapid Response chaplains have no shortage of people to talk and pray with: those who have lost their loved ones, and those who are dying.
Faith Comes by Hearing shipped 100 portable, solar-powered audio Bibles with Convoy of Hope, which is sending containers of food, clothing and supplies to churches in Haiti. Pastors will distribute the “Proclaimer units” with the Bible recorded in Haitian Creole.
“God gave me this food,” says Doula, a 33-year-old mother of four, as she walked away with meal packs from Convoy of Hope. “I have faith now that He will give me even more in the coming days.”