Sunday 4 December 2016

Urgent call for vital funds after Haiti hurricane

Jane O'Faherty

Published 06/10/2016 | 02:30

Hurricane Matthew is seen over Haiti in this image taken from NASAs Aqua satellite. NASA/Handout via REUTERS
Hurricane Matthew is seen over Haiti in this image taken from NASAs Aqua satellite. NASA/Handout via REUTERS

Relief workers say urgent help is needed in response to Hurricane Matthew, which has devastated much of Haiti and the Caribbean.

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Over one million children and their families have been affected since the Category Four storm hit on Tuesday, with parts of the south of the island completely cut off from aid. It's the third major natural disaster to hit Haiti since 2010.

A man carrying branches from fallen trees walks next to the Cathedral after Hurricane Matthew in Les Cayes, Haiti. REUTERS/Andres Martinez Casares
A man carrying branches from fallen trees walks next to the Cathedral after Hurricane Matthew in Les Cayes, Haiti. REUTERS/Andres Martinez Casares

NGOs on the ground are appealing for donations to replenish vital funds needed to help the most vulnerable.

Irish charity Haven said towns and villages have been submerged under several feet of rainwater, while houses and possessions were destroyed in 230kph winds.

Meanwhile, food shortages appear imminent as farms and crops are lost in continuing flooding and mudslides. Clean water is also even more scarce than usual.

John Moore, Haven's Country Director for Haiti, said many of its key livelihood programmes have been destroyed.

"Families across Haiti are in shock after the third major natural disaster to hit the country since 2010," he said. "We urgently need to raise funds to push emergency relief forward and support the people of Haiti to rebuild their lives."

Meanwhile, Unicef Head of Communications for Haiti Cornelia Walther said it was impossible to know fatalities in southern Haiti, as "neither civil protection workers nor NGOs can get outdoors to assess the situation".

Irish Independent

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