Entries in Aid Accountability (5)


Alice Walker Statement on Haiti and Tropical Storm Isaac

A homeless earthquake survivor sits in front of her makeshift shelter in Kanaran, outside Haiti's capital. Photo by BVK

I was recently in Haiti, and what I experienced there made my heart very sad for humanity.  Two and a half years ago, when Haiti suffered a devastating earthquake, I, like so many others around the globe, sent what aid I could to the people who lost, if not their lives, then almost everything else: housing, clothing, schools, food, among other basic things. 

It was shocking to realize, in Haiti as of last week, that the funds so generously and thoughtfully gathered by the collective human family in an attempt to stand by the people of Haiti who suffered the most from the earthquake, never reached them.  That over 400,000 persons: women, men, children, the elderly, the infirm, the mentally stressed, are still homeless, having (some of them) been moved to an internal refugee camp in a desert with no visible sources of either water or food. 

In a former soccer field in the inner city neighborhood of Solino, hundreds of families live crammed together under tents 32 months after the earthquake. Photo by BVK

Dreading the likely impact this week-end of oncoming tropical storm and possible hurricane Isaac on the fragile tents and shanties displaced Haitians are attempting to live in I can only ask that, again, collectively, humanity will rouse itself to demand to know where are the funds sent with such faith after the earthquake.  Why are so many Haitians still homeless?  Why are so many without adequate shelter, commiseration, compassion and food? Why are we not allowed to care for each other as we very much wish to do?  As a film made about this mismanagement of apparently everything states in its title:  Where Did the Money Go? 

As catastrophic climate change tightens its grip on the planet, there are bound to be more disasters of the kind that has so harmed Haiti.  We would do well, as a human family, to make every attempt to remain steadfast in our support of one another as we face a future far from secure for any of us.

Alice Walker


Stories Through Images: Where It Rains Everyday

These photos illustrate the life for hundreds of thousands of internally displaced Haitians, families who were left homeless after the earthquake. Since the start of March, rain has been falling everyday, filling the camps with mud and puddles. Imagine starting each day exhausted and wet, and knowing that the risk of cholera and malaria grows with each rain.
The United Nations and NGOs still have funds in hand to help the victims of the earthquake yet they are asking for more money in order to deliver the lifesaving aid that people need today.
Who is making the decisions about how existing funds are spent? The rainy season brings new urgency to the living conditions of Haiti's internally displaced people (IDPs) and saving lives must be the number one priority of humanitarian organizations - urgent action must be placed before keeping money in the bank to sustain the agencies and NGOs themselves.




Haiti:  Seven Places Where the Earthquake Money Did and Did Not Go

By Bill Quigley and Amber Ramanauskas*

Haiti, a close neighbor of the US with over nine million people, was devastated by earthquake on January 12, 2010.  Hundreds of thousands were killed and many more wounded. 
The UN estimated international donors gave Haiti over $1.6 billion in relief aid since the earthquake (about $155 per Haitian) and over $2 billion in recovery aid (about $173 per Haitian) over the last two years.

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A Tale of Eviction in Haiti

(TriceEdneyWire.com) - Despite the lack of attention in the media, the situation in Haiti remains dire. Despite money donated by international organizations and regular people, real relief has not reached the people who need it the most. The blue tarps that blanketed the city, reminiscent of the early reporting by Anderson Cooper, are still there – an obvious sign that things have not returned to normal.

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Where Did All the Haiti Money Go?

When a 7.0 magnitude earthquake hit Haiti on January 12, 2010 the world community came to its aid. Millions of private citizens in this country and around the world reached into their household budgets and gave generously to the Haitian people who were grappling with the devastation.

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