by Djino Forges
I wasn’t at the orphanage when the earthquake struck. Wilna (The house mother) Julot, Donold, Albert, Jacky, and I
were running errands for my Dad.
I have to admit when the tremors first started It didn’t register that an earthquake was happening. It wasn’t until
the shattering of glass and the screams of Wilna that I realized what was happening.
“OH, GOD! OH, GOD! OH, GOD!” Wilna was screaming while frozen in place covering her head. Glass shattering
all around her. “DJINO!” She screamed when she saw me rushing towards her.
I grabbed her hand. We didn’t have time to exchange words. My mind was racing trying to figure out the safest
route while the rest of my body was on autopilot. Once we exited the building we were safe from the ceiling
collapsing on us. I was relieved when I saw the boys safe outside the building.
“THANK YOU JESUS! THANK YOU JESUS” Wilna kept yelling while looking up to the sky with both hands in the
I noticed that the boys all wore the same face of terror scanning my face to see if I was scared too. I’m sure I wore
“Are you all okay? Did anyone get hurt? I said
“I fell,” Albert said “I was running too fast and I fell and cut my knee” ( a small cut)
Albert had experienced an earthquake before. He was at Port au Prince during the 2010 earthquake.
After seeing that we were okay and the building didn’t collapse I started laughing thinking to myself, that was an
earthquake huh, yesh don’t want to go through that again.
After checking up on POH and our loved ones, A man on a motorcycle with an elderly woman riding on the
back was about to drive past, we waved and said good morning. When they drove by I noticed the back of the
Elderly women’s shirt drenched in blood and the back of her head busted. After that cars and motorbikes rushed
past us carrying the injured.
My cousin, Maxon stopped by to check up on us.
“I see everyone is okay here. Djino let’s go. I want to show you something.”
I hopped on the back of his motorcycle and we drove off.
“I’ve never experienced an earthquake before today and I didn’t think it was that big of a deal.” He said while
driving “My house and the houses surrounding mine are fine. It wasn’t until when I drove past the Hospital I
realized how big of an impact this earthquake really had.”
We arrived outside the gate of the hospital and it was packed with people.
“Go inside, walk around. I want you to see Haiti after a crisis”
“You’re not coming with me?” I asked while getting off the bike.
“It’s too much for me,” he said shaking his head “I can’t see stuff like that…… I’ll be waiting out here for you!”
The closer I walked towards the gate the louder the sound of panic, screams, and cries got. There was a wall of
people blocking the entrance. I looked back at Maxon and he motioned with his hand for me to keep going. I had
to push past people to make it through the gate. What I saw put me in a state of shock. I saw people with heads
busted from bricks, I saw a boy being carried by his friends, screaming in pain because his right leg was twisted
and broken, a confused father in tears holding his unresponsive baby, a person walking around with a hand that
held only broken fingers. I saw a woman lying on the ground screaming in pain, her foot was cut open and was
being held by nothing but skin. There were people on the ground dead or on the verge of dying and trails of blood
all on the concrete floor. And there were more injured people pouring through the gate.
I don’t know how long I was in there for but I met back up with Maxon again when I thought I had enough.
“Ready to go?” He said trying to read my facial expression.
“Yea lets go”
“ …..You needed to see that. If you’re trying to do what your dad does you need to see all of Haiti.” He said while
He continued talking but my mind was too loud processing what it had just witnessed. I then started tearing up
thinking about how naïve I was for laughing, taking the earthquake for a joke. I could have easily ended up as
anyone of the people I saw at that hospital.
Thank you, God, that I didn’t. We saw this woman around the age of 25 limping covered in dust. She had just
pulled herself out of a collapsed building and was on her way to her mother’s house to see if she was okay. and a
girl crying while walking towards the hospital saying that her family got crushed.
No one slept inside their home, including us at POH.
Micro tremors throughout the day put us in a constant state of fear
And small cracks throughout the building make it unsafe to sleep inside the building. We
grabbed our mattresses and all slept on the field. The kids seemed to really enjoy doing that
but It was short-lived once tropical storm Grace passed through. The tents and tarps we set out
either got wet inside or got blown away resulting in our mattresses getting soaked and us
sleeping in the trucks. We are currently housing a mother from the surrounding community
and her kids because her home was destroyed during the quake.
We are asking for your support in our recovery efforts for not only our facility but also the surrounding communities. Your donations will go toward our recovery or to the recovery of the surrounding communities. Your generosity will go towards aiding those in our community with food, supplies and their medical needs. Donate now!