I’ve added some updates in blockquote format throughout this story.
It’s as bad as the tsunami, not in numbers* but in trauma to a country that was already suffering from poverty and distress. They don’t need “things” right now, they really need money for food, water, clothing and other necessities that can be purchased locally. Later, when people are rebuilding and monetary donations have slowed, we can send food, clothing and furniture. You don’t have to give much; if everyone gave even only $5.00 it would make a huge difference to the charities that are on the ground and the ones preparing to leave.
*Initially, the numbers were in the tens of thousands, but as bodies are found under the rubble and people continue to perish from the aftereffects, the number has risen over 200,000. The estimate of loss from the tsunami ranged from 230,000 to 275,000 because some individuals were never found.
In every disaster the Search and Rescue dogs are integral, as brave and hard-working as the humans in the search and very often lifesavers because they can sense a living being below the rubble that a human would never know about; unfortunately, they can also find corpses, but this, too, has its place in a mission like the aftermath of an earthquake.
And animals in general, livestock, companion animals and wildlife, never had a very easy stay in Haiti, though many organizations were making great strides, especially with pets. Once things are stabilized, many animals will need to be rescued before diseases begin to spread, especially rabies, or former pets become wild with no place for them to go and be tamed.
First, the people
Pittsburgh has some interesting connections to Haiti in charities that are based here—WorldVision, Brother’s Brother Foundation, Hopital Albert Sweitzer are only three that are based in Pittsburgh. Our local reporters composed a few articles describing the local charities as well as the national and international charities with contact information.