How to Help & Empower Haiti

What exactly is going on in Haiti?

On Saturday, August 14, a 7.2 magnitude earthquake struck the south of Haiti, killing nearly 2,000, injuring thousands more, and destroying homes, schools, and businesses.

This kind of disaster would be devastating anywhere, but Haitians especially can’t seem to catch a break. The long-lasting effects of centuries of slavery, as well as decades of political unrest, brutal dictatorships, and other natural disasters like the catastrophic earthquake in 2010 have left Haiti the poorest nation in the Western hemisphere. The recent assassination of their President has left the situation in Haiti even more unsettled with general unrest and uncertain infrastructure throughout the nation.  

Having been to Haiti twice, I can tell you that my friends in Haiti are some of the most vibrant, passionate, and resilient people I’ve ever met. And you can bet that they will keep pressing on, rebuilding, and making things beautiful in their home country. If you're looking to link arms and help, we’ve put together a few ways you can do that.

[Photo credit: Vi Bella]

Best Ways to Help

One of the best ways to help right now is to give money. Giving to reputable charities determining the most important day-to-day needs is far more helpful and efficient than shipping physical items to Haiti. The charities below work closely with local Haitians to provide food, medical care, disaster relief, and more. 

  • Vi Bella Serves - rebuilding destroyed Haitian workshop for partner artisans that work with Vi Bella
  • Hopital Bernard Mevs (via Project Medicare) - the only trauma hospital in the country where severely injured people are being air-lifted.
  • Hopital Saint Boniface (via Health Equity International) - a 180-bed hospital in Southern Haiti  
  • CARE - emergency supplies, food, and disaster relief to those affected
  • Save the Children - emergency supplies, food, water purification, and tablets to children and families affected
  • Convoy of Hope - emergency supplies, food, and shelter to those affected
  • World Central Kitchen - emergency food and meals to those affected and to first responders

Immediate relief work from people traveling to Haiti is not needed right now. Experts are asking that civilians stay home and let professionals handle the first wave of relief and rescue efforts. In the coming weeks and months, there may be more need for disaster relief and cleanup teams and we’ll update our blogas we find out about more needs.

DoneGood Partner Brands

[Photo credit: Deux Mains]

Three DoneGood partner brands (Deux Mains, Vi Bella, Askanya) are either partially or primarily based in Haiti, creating jobs and empowering local Haitians. By and large, our partner brands are reporting three things:

  • Safety of their artisans (thank goodness!)

  • The emotional effects on Haitians as well as the reality that the ripples from this tragedy will affect life in Haiti for the foreseeable future.

  • A determination to keep going, to keep empowering, to keep creating, and to keep persevering.

Vi Bella has reported that the workshop of one of their parter artisans in south Haiti has been destroyed and are asking for donations to help this team rebuild through their nonprofit, Vi Bella Serves.

Buying Haitian products that create jobs and empower families in Haiti is one of the best ways to support ongoing good there. Not only does it support sustainable jobs and a better economy for all, but as our partner brand Askanya explains: "often [our makers] have friend, family in the affected areas - their earning will help support these extra mouths moving in from the affected areas."

Don't Forget about Haiti

Haiti will dominate the news cycle for the next few days, but the needs will not go away overnight! In the coming weeks and months, we want to continue to check the news on Haiti, continue to give, continue to support Haitian workers, and continue to check on ways to support and empower this beautiful nation! 

 Thank you so much for all you do to help ease people’s pain throughout the world!

-Erin and the DoneGood Team

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published