First Particular person: One 12 months on from Haiti earthquake, time to return dwelling

“When the earthquake struck, I had no concept what it was as I had by no means skilled one thing so loud and dramatic earlier than. I assumed it was an act of God and I used to be terrified.

My complete home was shaking so I rushed outdoors with my daughter to see what was happening, and I spotted it was a tremor from beneath the earth. Then a part of my home collapsed, and enormous cracks appeared in its cinder block partitions.

The temporary camp opened in Devirel four days after the August 2021 earthquake.

UN Haiti/Daniel Dickinson

The momentary camp opened in Devirel 4 days after the August 2021 earthquake.

The neighborhood got here collectively

We have been fortunate, as a result of no-one in my household was injured, however I knew many neighbours who died. The neighborhood, which is rural and made up of farmers and other people shopping for and promoting items, got here collectively and we helped one another. We saved many kids by digging them from beneath the rubble.

I believe the earthquake made us stronger as a neighborhood and that helped us once we moved into this momentary camp in Devirel on the sting of the town of Les Cayes, simply 5 days after we fled from our dwelling.

Life right here may be very powerful. We stay, in twos and threes, in small shelters constructed from plastic sheeting. It’s scorching as a result of there aren’t any bushes right here and when it rains it is vitally muddy. There may be not a lot to eat, however we proceed to take care of one another and share the small quantity of meals that we have now.

UN help

Once we arrived, we obtained lots of help from the United Nations*. We obtained a hygiene equipment and have been ready to make use of a toilet which had been constructed for us. I obtained some money funds so I may afford to hold on sending my daughter to highschool and at one level she obtained free college meals.

My aunt additionally obtained some monetary help as she is disabled and significantly susceptible. I’m very grateful for this help.

Typically, I can earn cash by serving to to reap a neighbour’s crops, but it surely’s troublesome to search out work, so I’ve to stay on little or no. It’s troublesome to vary one’s life if you happen to don’t have the monetary means to take action. I wish to return to my dwelling with my daughter, however I’m too scared to try this earlier than I restore it. So, I’ll attempt to avoid wasting cash to make the repairs.

One 12 months after the earthquake, I’m nonetheless optimistic for the longer term; I do know I can depend on myself and my neighborhood for a greater life.”

*A spread of UN businesses offered help to Plaisimond Milaure and her neighbours, together with money transfers for susceptible and disabled folks in addition to to help the education of children (Worldwide Group for Migration, IOM) hygiene kits (IOM and UNFPA) lavatory amenities (UNICEF) and college meals, World Meals Programme, WFP. The United Nations Workplace for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) coordinated the UN’s post-earthquake response.


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