The Les Cayes that welcomed me in May is not the same Les Cayes that I am currently in. So much has changed in a blink of an eye. Huge cameo trucks crowd the already crowded streets
causing dust, giving outside a slight gray hue. Helicopters and planes are constantly buzzing overhead and the skeletons of buildings make the once vibrant Les Caye seem dark and gloomy.
When the N.G.O’s (Non-government organizations) first started to flood Haiti the kids would rush to the fields to check them out, constantly look at the sky with amazement.
“OH! Look how low it’s flying! Djino, are those the planes that they put guns on?” Kenny asked.
“I don’t know, It’s the first time I’m seeing a plane like that. Maybe if they wanted to add some guns they can.” I replied entertaining his thought.
“I’M RIGHT HERE!!! Mica screamed while jumping and waving her hand. “COME AND PICK ME UP!”
I can’t even tell if she is being serious or is just joking. To have experienced an earthquake that forced us outside than to experience a tropical storm afterward that forced half of us back inside.
A civil protection worker had inspected the POH buildings and told us that all of them are safe enough to sleep in. However, for those of us (like myself) that was in a building during the earthquake we can’t bring ourselves to just yet. We are sleeping outside until the micro tremors ( It’s been a week and micro tremors still happen) cease’s.
“Lord God if you shake this building (POH main building) while I’m in the shower I’m running outside naked. But, pleassse Lord…While I’m running don’t let me slip on this tiled floor.” A conversation I had with God while I was filling my buckets with water to shower after a micro tremor.
We still manage to squeeze in a few laughs here and there even given our situation. Like how the night of the earthquake while we were all sound asleep on the field I kept getting woken up by what I thought was snoring. Albert is well known for how loud he snores so I assumed it was him. Until I heard a few people say in a loud whisper “Shoo! Shoo !” I put my glasses on and a few feet from where my bed was stationed was this huge pig that was getting a little too close to a mother (from the community).
She was holding her kids real tight while her, Wilna and a few other Poh kids were saying “Shoo”. Me forgetting that we have two pigs on site “What…? Whats’s happening right now?”
“Pig.” Wisline replied. Her mattress was placed next to mine.
The Inside of the truck
“whose pig? Where did this pig come from?”
“Oh… We have a pig?” I said confused while covering my entire body with the thinest blanket.
Something I used to do to prevent monsters from getting me as a kid.
“Wisline. Don’t let the pigs eat your fingers.” I said while cocooned underneath the blanket.
Her and I laugh at that moment from time to time.
Haiti after a crisis
Maxon (my cousin) is a merchant. He earns a living selling tourists all sorts of trinkets and paintings. He once told me how on his way to sell to a missionary team. His motorbike tire had fell into a fairly large pot hole causing him skid across the road injuring his leg badly. He was in need of money so instead of going to the hospital like anyone would do he hopped on his bike and rushed to sell his trinkets and paintings with his badly injured leg. After he told me this story it clicked. That is all of Haiti. After a crisis the people of Haiti have so little time to grieve to mourn. If they do, they risk losing money and potentially going hungry. Unlike the developed world the developing world like Haiti doesn’t receive much governmental aid that the people in Haiti can benefit from during times of crisis. So that’s why after a crisis like the Earthquake it didn’t come as a shock when I saw people selling some sort of service or produce in front of their collapsed home. They mourn for a day or so and get right back to living their day to day life as best as they can. I saw a man who was taking debris from what I assumed was his collapsed home on the side of the road and was filling in the potholes because the government doesn’t. He took matters into his own hands to make the lives of others a little bit better. And although the N.G.O’s help where the government don’t sometimes that help can be detrimental to a third world country like Haiti if it continues for too long.
N.G.O.s are non-profit organizations that are local (like POH), national or even international. N.G.O.s offer a multitude of different types of aid. Human rights, environmental, social and advocacy just to name a few. They are spread around the globe to promote social and/ or Political change to developing countries like that of Haiti. It seems like the NGO’s have been the ones taking care of the people of Les Cayes after the quake. Sending workers to remove debris and giving the people of Les Cayes food, water and supplies like tents and tarps. Those that receive more than they need sell the extras and since tents are a hot commodity now they are being sold in the black markets at a higher price. Foreign NGO’s offer so much but often times they are a double edged sword without intending to be if they stay too long . Handing out food, water and reconstructing buildings do help but local farmers and laborers can’t compete with the cheap/ free food or
labor that is being offered by foreign N.G.O’s resulting in the farmers and other workers to go else where to find work. This is what happened in after the 2010 earthquake in Port au Prince. It is too early to know if that is what’s going to happen in Les Cayes, Haiti but I pray that it doesn’t.
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What we need help with – Donate Today
– Help reconstruct a home for a family of six
– Window screens throughout POH to keep bugs from
invading POH at night.
– Fortify part of the outer wall that was effected by the quake
and tropical storm
– Fix the cracks in the ceiling (Water seeps through when it
– Backup generator