Since Friday afternoon Fr. Rick, founder of Fondation St Luc, organised a trip with a team to find a way to reach Jeremie, Dame Marie and Laseringue Abricot. It was too complicated to reach those areas by car but we made this impossible task possible. We spent a night and hours on the way, in the attempt to reach Dame Marie. We had to work on the road because we got trapped there. After spending more than 5 hours working on that road to have a possibility to pass, which seemed impossible because all over the road there were a lot of falling trees so we had to cut those trees to have a free way to pass and we spent all the morning on Saturday on that. So we had to pay some little money to the people to cut some falling trees to free the road with our team. What we lived and saw is unbelievable!! It seemed the end of the world. We were the first to reach these areas by car and people were so surprised!
We still can’t really find the words to explain what we saw but if we could describe this situation perfectly we would just say it’s a disaster and it is the worst destruction we have ever seen before in Haiti caused by a hurricane like that.
Arrived there in Dame Marie we could not rest or even eat due to what we had seen, but with full energy received from God we felt more motivated than before to continue our visit, so we visited our main projects in Manitane de Dame Marie’s school and listened to people.
Manitane de Dame Marie school.
The old school structure, the one that the students were still using was destroyed.. The new construction of the School had a few damaged parts. The depot for materials like cement, iron, and others was destroyed. Now the building of the kindergarten that is still standing is being used to receive the people whose houses were totally destroyed. This building received more than 16 families with a total of 106 persons until they can get somewhere to sleep.
Way to Laseringue.
To get there we took a flyboat. It was not a good sensation to use that means of transport. It was too risky but it was the only one we could use to reach that place. Arrived in Laseringue after spending around 1 and a half hour floating on the sea, what we saw was a total destruction, even worse. We couldn’t go through where we used to pass to reach the community where St Augustin school is, but we walked on the mountain. After around 30 minutes’ walk to reach this community what we could see was only some places with no standing trees, some walls of some houses that we were building and some rare standing tree trunk and rare sheet or pieces of steel.
St Augustin school.
No word can explain and I think the pictures can tell you more.
Now, as you cannot possibly imagine, almost no one in this community has anywhere to go and sleep. Since the beginning of the hurricane it has served as a big refuge for a lot of people even you can see how damaged the school is. More than 3,450 people who don’t know where to sleep are using this space, I mean: classrooms, kitchen, basketball field, because their houses are totally destroyed.
About the Agricultural activity.
It is totally devastated, no plantations, no livestock.
What are our urgent needs?
Now in those areas people need:
– Foods and Water
-The children want to get back to school urgently as they started to ask when they can start since our visit.
– Houses where to live
– Agricultural action
– Livestock action
– Clothes and other materials to live because the hurricane destroyed everything.
– Transportation of materials (foods, water, etc…) by helicopter or trucks.
As you know, Fondation St Luc started taking action since during the hurricane and the responsible team at the moment is getting organised to bring food, water and medical assistance however they can.
We urgently need more actions, we need help and donations. If we can have more chances to buy more food and water, and other materials to assist these people in need, it would be the most important action for now.
We feel that our active presence here, being close to these people is very necessary. I am just telling you this because I am living the situation and seeing it all. And we all feel destroyed also by this hurricane because we can’t help, not even to satisfy the needs of a few people.
Any help in this moment would be a big gift for us.
ABF Project Manager