The Haiti Health Collaborative
A GIANT & H4HD Partnership
A fierce 7.0 magnitude earthquake struck Haiti late Tuesday afternoon on January 12, 2010, bringing even more suffering to a nation that was already the hemisphere’s poorest and most disaster-prone. Centered 10 miles from Port Au Prince the capital of Haiti, it was the worst earthquake to hit the region in over 200 years and the devastation has been enormous.
The most desperate and immediate needs of the more than 3 million Haitians who have been impacted by the disaster are food, water, shelter and medical care / medical supplies.
The phases leading to recovery
• Search and rescue including the use of heavy equipment to remove rubble in the effort to save lives.
• Immediate relief: the provision of immediate needs to survivors such as medical assistance, food, cleans water and shelter.
• Short-term recovery: comes during the weeks and months after the immediate relief effort. It includes providing temporary housing, temporary schools, the initial rebuilding of infrastructure and services for displaced families
• Long-term recovery: This phase is measured in years, and includes livelihood restoration and permanent rebuilding of homes, schools and infrastructure.
It is evident that the needs of the Haitian people will continue long after the immediate relief phase of the recovery period. We will be setting up temporary clinics in different parts of Haiti over the next few weeks to months. We will also continue to ship items like food, clothes, medical supplies, and medications to our local partners.
G.I.A.N.T. and other partners will be involved in providing assistance in all areas, building local capacity and also providing funds to support medical assistance, and the provision of food, clean water and shelter.
In our commitment to support long-term recovery efforts we will help rebuild safer, healthier and more sustainable communities.
We have now supported and coordinated logistics for several medical teams that have gone or are in the process of going to Haiti. We continue to act as a clearing house for doctors, nurses, psychologists, social workers, and other relief professionals who want to assist Haiti.
During the year following the earthquake the teams we worked focused on needs assessments, food provision, counseling, medical care and support. The main sites of the efforts were Léogâne, Carrefour, St-Marc (hospital), and the General Hospital. Our outreach continued in Jacmel, parts of Port au Prince, Gros – Morne and Léogâne. We also collaborated with local partners in Les Cayes, Cap-Haitien, and Gonaives.
Focus on Grand–Goâve, Haiti
This past year we partnered with Humanity 4 Haitian Development (H4HD) and other organizations in an attempt to help rebuild Grand–Goâve, Haiti. We assisted with the development of local capacity by providing technical assistance, and also by providing cash assistance to local groups for the purchasing of relief supplies locally in order to support the local economy, and contribute to the recovery process.
Grand-Goâve (Haitian Creole: Grangwav) is a city in the Ouest Department of southwestern Haiti.
The town is one of the oldest cities of the country, and was named Goâve by the Amerindians. The Spanish called it Aguava at the end of the 16th century. After French colonization through the releasing of the Spanish, the French divided the city into two halves, Grand-Goâve and Petit-Goâve.
Ninety percent of Grand-Goâve was destroyed by the earthquake that happened on January 12, 2010. All public buildings were destroyed, including the schools, city hall, and police station.
We conducted a thorough needs assessment of Grand-Goâve with emphasis on the following areas: public health, water & sanitation, health care, agro-sustainability, and education.
• The focus of our efforts were to RESEARCH, ANALYZE and ASSESS the living situations in Grand-Goâve, in order to determine the short and long term needs of the people.
• Food, temporary shelter, medical supplies and medicines were part of our temporary / short term relief efforts. However, the heart of the issue is to detail exactly what will sustain Grand-Goâve for years to come. Our experts continue to work towards establishing comprehensive and sustainable initiatives.
• We cannot assume the needs of the Haitian population, or begin project/capacity building without FIRST laying the bricks for a strong foundation.
Areas where needs sssessments were completed during the June / July 2010 trips:
• Water, Sanitation, Environment
• Agriculture, Food, Nutrition
• Health Care (medical/public health/dental/mental/rehabilitation)
• Shelter, Housing, Infrastructure
• Documentary / Photojournalism
Grand-Goâve, Haiti community appraisal / community needs assessment timeline:
• Define aims of appraisal (completed)
• Identify community for assessment - Grand Goave, Haiti
• Identify study team (GIANT & H4HD)
• Train in qualitative techniques - (completed)
• Examine available information - (completed)
• Define key questions and issues - (completed)
• Pilot questions in interviews or questionnaires -(completed)
• Identify key informants -(completed)(June 2010 Trip)
• Choose and use appropriate methods - completed)(June 2010 Trip)
• Analyze information after each interview -(completed)
• Write report and develop action plan-(completed)(July to August 2010)
. Education Trip - completed)(October, 2010)
. Implementation of projects - In progress 2010 / 2011
Bryan Meltz went to rural Haiti and wants to share some of her work with you.
Bryan Meltz has an exhibit at Emory University on Haiti called After: Images from Haiti. Visit http://web.library.emory.edu/haiti-bryan-meltz.
We are currently developing our Sister Hospital & Public Health Partnership Project.
- Infrastructure and equipment capacity building:
- Health related supplies and biomedical equipment
- Long term efficient health structures
- Ambulances, emergency response vehicles
- Mobile Health Units
- Human Resource Development, training and education with emphasis on:
- Medical, Public Health and Biomedical Professionals
- Residents and Interns
- Medical Students
- Public Health Students
- Nursing Students
- Biomedical Engineering Students
- Physical Therapy Students
- Community Health Workers