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Please donate! URGENT request and update

Posted by rightsbasedhaiti on January 16, 2010

The gunfire spread last night to our zone. At 1 am it started. It was off in the distance a ways when it first started but got closer and closer up until about 2:30 and then it seemed to stop. All of the homeless on the streets and in the refugee camps again met the chaos with loud singing, clapping and prayers.

I am at the Matthew 25 house in Delmas 33. Here we have set up a triage hospital with more than 1,300 refugees on a soccer field. The people at Matthew 25 have been traveling all over the city trying to figure out what clinics and hospitls are operational, what services they can provide and what the needs are.

There is no visible coordination effort from international agencies on the ground. There were no planes coming in yesterday. One of my coordinating partners, AMURT-Haiti, worked to find a plane of 30-40 doctors and supplies that could come, but the plane was not allowed to land in the PAP airport. We have teams in the Domiican Republic with truckloads of supplies, but they were stopped at the border and were not allowed entry.

The situation here is desperate and getting restless. The John Hopkins Students who were visiting Rights based Haiti and AMURT when the earthquake hit, have been doing surveys and assessments of the clinics and refuggee camps in the nearby zones. The surveys that they conducted two days ago show that none of the people in the camps had food or water to last them more than a day.

Here at Matthew 25, we have been doign amputations, and other painful surgeries, with no painkillers, no anesthesia, nothing to work with. There are no tools for our doctors. We have numerous Haitian doctors and nurses here but no supplies! We have run out of antibiotics twice but then found them by searching at nearby clinics run by missions and NGOs.

We have heard nothing from MINUSTAH. I have not seen any of the international agencies on the ground. I have seen belgian doctors and cuban doctors all doing amazing work – but we have not seen or received any contact or assistance from higher agencies ourselves.

The city has run out of water and food – but the biggest problem is gas and diesel. The little that trickles in to the one or two gas stations is the subject of fights that will soon become rioting. At matthew 25, there no diesel to run the generator. We are using the last power that the inverter has that may cut out at any time. Our vehicles are all on their last ounce of fuel. I have sent one of my trusted staff and friends who worked closely with me during the gonaives emergency in 2008 to find gas this morning. I am afraid for him. There is no way for him to communicate with me because there is no phone service in the country. Now we are also running out of money. I gave my last cash today to pay for gas, a little bit of food, and a spare tire for one of our vehicles to replace one that was stolen. The nearest western union is two hours north in St. Marc and we are not sure if that is still functioning.

An added pressure on the city right now is that, due to the lack of communications, many people from the provinces are coming to search for their loved ones. They then add to the numbers of people stuck in PAP with no way out, no food, or water.

All of the problems that exist in catastrophes, we are expereinceing now. how to dispose of the bodies, the human waste, how to move people out of the city. Everyone here is fearing rain because they think that the first rain will move the earth under the standing houses causing those buildings to fall as well. Each day more things fall.

I am coordinating with AMURT, KONPAY, Beyond Borders, Matthew 25, and many other partners on an integrated response that will help us get through the next week as well as prepare us to deal with the coming months of insecurity. We have coordinated the shipment of diesel from the open port in cap-haitian, the use of a shipping company to haul fuel from the DR to PAP, the use of a large protected storage compound to store the fuel. We have Haitian volunteers working with the John Hopkin team to conduct the surveys to provide us important data on the numbers and locations of people who are in need of medical care, so that when help and supplies arrive, we are able to efficiently get people to where they need to go. We have worked with grassroots leaders in Commune Anse ROuge to gather information throughout the commune on family names and locations in PAP so that each village can send on e or two people to serach for loved ones in PAP rather than everyone from the villages going into the disaster zone.

in general, we are being used as a place for information exchange. journalists, and organizational representatives are checking in daily to give updates and share information which i then share with my contact at KONPAY who then shares the information with the larger network of NGOS that we are coordinating with. until MINUSTAH is able to re-establish a coordination base, we are making the MAtthew 25 house the coordination headquarters for our operations.

Haitians are helping each other in glorious acts of compassion and kindness every where you look. These people have endured so much unspeakable and unnecessary suffering. I am today, as always, blessed to be walking with them in their struggle to overcome their awful and unfair circumstances, and am even more blessed to be sharing in the strength of spirit that makes each one of them my hero.

Our partners also need your help! AMURT-Haiti and Beyond Borders are helping us to coordinate our efforts. We are all working together to share resources to assist haitians during this disaster. Please send your donations to Konpay, to AMURT-Haiti, or Beyond Borders to help us!

Amber Lynn Munger, J.D.
US/Haiti Phone: 1 (828) 348-4624
Haiti Cell: + (509) 3656-8292
Skype: DixiePea

“Everyone has duties to the community in which alone the free and full development of his personality is possible.”
– Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 29(1)

“Chak moun gen yon seri obligasyon anvè kominote kote li ap viv la. Paske kominote a se sèl kote li kapab alèz pou li devlope pèsonalite li tout bon vre.”
– Deklarasyon Linivèsèl Dwa Moun, Atik 29(1)

Amber Lynn Munger, J.D.
US/Haiti Phone: 1 (828) 348-4624
Haiti Cell: + (509) 3656-8292
Skype: DixiePea

“Everyone has duties to the community in which alone the free and full development of his personality is possible.”
– Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 29(1)

“Chak moun gen yon seri obligasyon anvè kominote kote li ap viv la. Paske kominote a se sèl kote li kapab alèz pou li devlope pèsonalite li tout bon vre.”
– Deklarasyon Linivèsèl Dwa Moun, Atik 29(1)

On Jan 14, 2010, at 2:02 PM, Amber Lynn Munger wrote:

In my thirteen years of working in Haiti, not once before have I seen such massive destruction as we are experiencing now. Nor have I seen such motivation, determination, compassion, and solidarity among people. When we entered portoprens after the quake struck, the city had fallen and was continuing to fall as a result of continuous aftershocks. The streets were full of people sitting together. Everyone was sitting in the middle of the roads for fear that the houses would continue to fall on them. They were singing. The whole city was singing. They were singing songs of solidarity. They were singing songs of thanks and praise that they were still able to sing and to be together. These people have lost everything. The city is now a city of refugees. But they are putting their voices together to be thankful.

After recovering our loved ones that we could find from the wreckage, we spent the rest of the night assisting others in the street, strategizing and attempting to rest to prepare for the coming days. The whole night we passed hearing people singing, people screaming and crying when their loved ones died. People were dying all around. And the tremors continued all night. The hospitals are full and cannot accept more people. All over PAP there is danger from the destruction. There are still no cell phone communications or internet available. Coordinating activities is extremely difficult.

What is needed now is a way to get people out of the city. I am working with several organizations on a coordinated disaster response that is focusing on reinforcing the countryside so that people can leave portoprens and go back to their families in the province. Almost everyone in PAP has family in the countryside. The efforts that I am supporting are helping haitians to support their family members in leaving PAP and in receiving the care that they need when they leave.

If not organized strategically, this disaster will soon have huge consequences to the food producing regions that depend on PAP to purchase their product and services. We need to reinforce these areas and set up services in the communes so that people can flee the cities and find the support that they need in the communes. We need to support grassroots organizations in the commune by sending them resources to buy food, by sending them medical experts and materials, and provide them with other basic services that will support them in staying in the province and getting their lives together.

I am working with grassroots leaders in zones all over PAP as well as leaders from the provinces to identify strategies to move the people out and to assist the people in PAP who cannot leave in finding food, water, shelter and medical care. I am helping these leaders to coordinate and to facilitate outside help as well such as foreign doctors and supplies being sent by other countries. These leaders are identifying the needs in their communities and the network I am working with is coordinating thier needs with the resources that are bging sent from outside the country as well as from zone to zone within the country. I am assisting in the coordination of this effort on the ground in Haiti and Melinda Miles of Konpay is currently handling the logistics and coordination from the US. I am also partnering with AMURT-Haiti to coordinate emergency food relief in slums in the bourdon area of portoprens. We need help. We desperately need money to be sent to use for gas, transport, food, supplies co,ing from the US such as medical supplies and web phones, and to pay Haitians working to help Haitians. Many Haitians are working together without compensation to help one another. But this is not sustainable over the next month as resources begin to dwindle and people’s needs become desperate. We need to be able to support their work. Please send contributions to Konpay and go to their site where they are developing a page on our disaster response efforts at http://www.razoo.com/story/Haiti-Earthquake-Emergency-Relief-Campaign. You can find donation information on that page. You can also visit the Konpay, AMURT-Haiti and Beyond Borders websites to learn more about the work of those partners.

Please help!


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