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Home Global Activities America Tzu Chi Extends Helping Hand to Haiti

Tzu Chi Extends Helping Hand to Haiti

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Within three days in August, the people of Haiti were struck by two terrible disasters. One was a 7.2-magnitude earthquake on August 14, and the other Tropical Depression Grace on August 16. They are still struggling to recover from the devastating earthquake of 2010. Seeing them suffer, what did Tzu Chi volunteers do for them? Here is the answer.

On August 17, a videoconference connected Jing Si Abode, Tzu Chi Charity Foundation, Tzu Chi USA Headquarters and branches in the Dominican Republic and Haiti to discuss how to deliver necessities and supplies quickly and safely to the needy in Haiti, keep them warm and fed and minimize damage from the earthquake.

On August 21 and 22, Tzu Chi volunteer Johnson Chang (張永忠) and local volunteers in Haiti drove over three hours from the Tzu Chi Haiti Campus in Port-au-Prince to a severely affected area, Les Cayes, in southwest Haiti, to survey the extent of the disaster. The key things they did during their trip were to see the damage to the school Sœurs Salésiennes in De Mapou: evaluate places to distribute aid and cooked food; where to store supplies; and the availability of water.

In downtown Les Cayes, houses have fallen down and walls have collapsed. The volunteers could not bear to see the devastation. After surveying two school buildings of Sœurs Salésiennes in De Mapou and Salesians of Don Bosco, the volunteers decided to use these schools as the places to distribute aid and cooked food. The buildings are secure and both schools have kitchens to cook food for distribution. On August 17, a videoconference connected Jing Si Abode, Tzu Chi Charity Foundation, Tzu Chi USA Headquarters, branches in the Dominican Republic and Haiti to discuss how to carry out relief work in Haiti. (Photo by Yen-Ren Chen; Jing Si Abode; date: 2021/08/17) Johnson Chang also saw that those affectees need blankets and Jing Si Multipurpose Folding Beds, because it is cold after midnight and everyone is sleeping on the ground. Having learnt this, Tzu Chi Charity Foundation plans to ship 6,300 blankets in one container, and 506 Jing Si Multipurpose Folding Beds in another as soon as possible.

In 1998, several hurricanes, including Georges and Mitch, struck the Caribbean. Tzu Chi urged people to gather their love together to donate their used clothes to help Haiti. Tzu Chi volunteers washed, ironed and mended the clothes and folded them neatly before putting them in boxes, and shipped them out to Haiti. Since then, Tzu Chi Charity Foundation has never stopped caring for people in Haiti.

Now Haiti is facing more severe disasters. The Tzu Chi Foundation is again reaching out a helping hand to Haitians. Wherever there is a disaster, Tzu Chi volunteers will go to help.


 
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Jing-Si Aphorism