Today, as the world marks the 5th anniversary of the Haiti earthquake in 2010 that killed hundreds of thousands and caused mass devastation, we take note of the incredible journey we’ve taken with the Haitian people.
On that fateful day in 2010, Kevin Rose, senior director for international programs, was on a trip to Haiti that started like any other. Convoy of Hope had already begun a feeding program in the country where we were feeding around 25,000 children; Rose was in Haiti to monitor the program.
“Our feeding program was in its infancy, but of course the events of January 12th changed that,” says Rose, recalling the day of the earthquake.
In fact, the events of that day not only changed the lives of the Haitian people, it also shaped the trajectory of Convoy of Hope. Immediately after the strong tremors shook the island nation, Rose and a few others were in the streets assessing the insurmountable damage and beginning what would become one of the biggest disaster response efforts in Convoy of Hope’s history.
Because of our strong alliances with partners and organizations, we were one of the first humanitarian aid groups to distribute food to earthquake survivors. Within weeks, we were able to distribute millions of meals and install water purification units in some of the hardest hit areas of Port-au-Prince.
We’ve been on the ground and have continued work in Haiti ever since. Through our budding Children’s Feeding Initiative in Haiti, we’re now feeding more than 62,000 children every school day. That’s more than 37,000 more than we were feeding before the earthquake!
We’ve also piloted an Agricultural Initiative in Haiti, where we are teaching farmers the skills they need to produce crops that yield significant returns. The farmers are now able to feed their families and provide food to our Children’s Feeding Initiative.
The good news doesn’t stop there. Along with our generous partner, Mission of Hope Haiti, we’ve built a new 30,000 square-foot warehouse just outside Port-au-Prince. The new facility helps us work more efficiently in preparation for natural disasters, such as earthquakes and hurricanes.
“To be a part of the transformation and healing of the Haitian people has truly been a humbling experience for us as an organization,” says Hal Donaldson, president and co-founder. “Thanks to the many individuals and partners who have supported our efforts over the last five years, we’ve saved lives and brought hope to tens of thousands of hurting people.”