On Saturday, August 14, 2021, a 7.2-magnitute earthquake jolted southeastern Haiti near the port city of Les Cayes. Since then, NRB members have been responding to the disaster by sending emergency relief and rallying in prayer for the people of Haiti.
The earthquake was followed by a 5.2 aftershock and was more powerful than the 7.0 earthquake that leveled communities near Port-au-Prince in 2010. The earthquake caused severe damage in Haiti, destroying homes and leaving people trapped in the rubble. As of Monday night, the death toll had risen to over 1,400 people with more than 6,000 injured and 30,000 people left homeless. Rescue workers continue to search the rubble for survivors even as rains from tropical storm Grace have begun to roll over the island.
On August 15, the day after the earthquake struck, NRB member Samaritan’s Purse sent its DC-8 airlift to deliver over a dozen disaster specialists and medical personnel along with 31 tons of relief including shelter materials, water filtration systems, and other supplies, to the suffering nation.
That same day, a fleet of five 40-foot containers carrying essential aid left the Food for the Poor-Haiti warehouse in Port-au-Prince and headed for the southern peninsula of the country—about 80 miles west of Port-au-Prince—to serve communities affected by the earthquake and aftershocks. Food for the Poor-Haiti also sent two trucks of medical supplies to the General Hospital of Les Cayes.
“We have been through a painful experience,” said Bishop Oge Beauvoir, Executive Director of FFTP-Haiti. “The needs are really crucial. It’s a matter of life and death for so many people on the streets. We need emergency relief. We need medicines, hygiene items, food, tents, water. Food For The Poor is committed to help. We count on people in America as you do every time to help Haiti in its time of need. You are our brothers and sisters. You did so in the past, and we are praying that you will for us again.”
In addition to meeting physical needs, Samaritan’s Purse is also committed to meeting spiritual needs amidst the disaster.
“This massive earthquake has devastated Haiti—it’s left many families homeless and searching for their loved ones,” said Franklin Graham, President of Samaritan’s Purse. “We are responding to help meet needs in Jesus’s name. Please pray for Haiti and all those who are suffering.”
Samaritan’s Purse teams are working with local authorities as well as local church partners to assess needs, distribute physical and spiritual aid, and prepare and deploy a strategic response in Haiti. The ministry is prepared to send a second airlift to deliver the Emergency Field Hospital, surgical teams, and additional doctors and nurses if needed for severe trauma patients.
Besides recovering from the effects of the earthquake, affected communities are also at a higher risk for other illnesses including COVID-19 and cholera.
“Food for the Poor is making the impossible possible with courageous missions to the area hit hardest by this devastating earthquake,” said FFTP President/CEO Ed Raine.
Food for the Poor invites you to help deliver aid to Haiti in two ways:
1. Make a cash donation at www.foodforthepoor.org/haitiemergency
2. Bring canned goods and first aid kits to the charity’s Coconut Creek warehouse (6401 Lyons Road, Coconut Creek, Florida) from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays. For more information on the specific items accepted, visit www.foodforthepoor.org/help-now/haiti-crisis/
Samaritan’s Purse called on believers to join them in praying for the country: “Please pray for the many hurting families as they mourn and await news of injured or missing loved ones. Pray also for rescue efforts, local authorities, church partners, and for wisdom and protection as our teams respond in the wake of unspeakable devastation.”
NRB member Compassion international also called for people to join them in praying for Haiti.
“The buildings of 46 of our frontline church partners were damaged or destroyed. An additional four Compassion staff members have had their homes collapse or suffer damage,” the ministry shared on social media. “Compassion has a team on the ground, preparing to distribute food and hygiene kits. We are also sending a medical team to the southern region to provide basic medical services. Please join us in praying for our brothers and sisters in Haiti.”
Photograph courtesy of Food for the Poor.