Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Rain, Rain, Go Away,

Come again another day - a day that people are living in houses again. It's been raining or drizzling for more than 48 hours. Before this, Port-Au-Prince was hit by the big storm that Ben mentioned earlier. 

I usually love the rain. I love the sound of rain, I love that the air cools off and that our garden gets watered without me having to do any work... But even while rain is imperative for growing food, it has always posed a challenge for Haiti's urban areas. Due to high levels of erosion and poor drainage in the city, landslides are common and low-lying areas flood on a regular basis. And now, post-earthquake, the impact of rain in Port-Au-Prince is even more distressing.

With tarps and tents damaged in the big storm, thousands of people are without adequate shelter. Even many of the shelters that weren't damaged on Friday have reached the end of their intended lifespan. While the rain continues to fall, 14, 542 families are estimated by the UN to be in need of shelter materials.

Meanwhile, the large-scale reconstruction that would get Haiti's homeless out of tents and into homes is not happening.  Less than 15 percent of the money pledged to reconstruction at the U.N. donor's conference in March has been delivered. The United States, which pledged $1.15 billion for rebuilding, has not delivered any of its funds. Although Congress has allocated the money, an authorization bill to deliver it is currently being held up by Oklahoma Sen. Tom Coburn.


nerkert said...

Thanks for this reminder to look outside of ourselves. (We've been rejoicing over the rain that we've had recently, after a five week drought.) It's hard to think about what the rain means to so many Haitians right now.

Rebecca said...

It's been raining for 48 hours straight in Ithaca too - map sonje nou. Grrr. Men named Tom aren't at the top of my list these days... might as well add another one. Kenbe ayiti.


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