Early reports suggest 350,000 people in need of assistance after Hurricane Matthew
PORTLAND, ORE – As the impact of Hurricane Matthew in Haiti becomes clearer, the global organization Mercy Corps is preparing an emergency response to help meet urgent needs and lay the groundwork for recovery. There is significant damage to infrastructure and agriculture, and Mercy Corps teams are conducting assessments to better understand the full extent of damage and needs.
“We still don’t know how many people have lost their homes; the hardest-hit areas are still tough to access,” says Jessica Pearl, Haiti Country Director for Mercy Corps. “And we are very concerned that many families do not have access to clean drinking water, which greatly increases the risk of cholera. Even before the hurricane, more than 27,000 cases of cholera had been reported this year alone.”
Mercy Corps will provide financial assistance to families with damaged or destroyed homes and help farmers recover from lost or damaged crops and livestock. The majority of Haitians survive through subsistence farming, and the organization works with farmers to rehabilitate degraded land, maintain fertile soil and diversify their gardens to increase profits and build food security.
Once able to access the hardest-hit southern areas of Haiti, Mercy Corps expects to provide urgently needed supplies, such as water, and help repair damaged shelters.
Mercy Corps has worked in Haiti since 2010 to lift families out of poverty by boosting small businesses and entrepreneurs, building up young people’s skills to become productive and active members of their communities, and improving the incomes and practices of rural farmers.
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