As you may know, Haiti has been hit particularly hard by a succession of hurricanes coming through the island in the past month or so. We have many schools in Haiti, and five representatives of those schools will be coming to our upcoming Biennial Conference in Tampa.
I invite you to read the attached letter from the Rev. Kesner Ajax, asking both for your prayers and your assistance. Should you be interested in helping with the recovery process in Haiti, his letter has information on where to send such funds.
Thank you for the many ways you support other Episcopal schools.
The Rev. Daniel R. Heischman
National Association of Episcopal Schools
September 6, 2008
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
I greet you at a very sad and hard time for the country of Haiti. I hope to give you a brief but informative update regarding our dire situation. We have been hit hard by a series of hurricanes, including Fay, Gustav, and Hanna. Hanna was particularly devastating, due to extensive flooding in Les Cayes, Cap-Haitian Gonaives, Hinche, Port de Paix, Leogane, Port au Prince, Croix des Bouquets, Bainet, Petit Trou de Nippes, Jacmel, Torbeck and many other regions. Numerous homes and schools were completely underwater during the worst parts of the storm as rivers overflowed their banks, becoming massive walls of water. Communication is difficult or impossible in many locations. There is infrequent or complete lack of electricity, many roads are destroyed, and rivers continue to overflow. Many bridges are unsafe to cross due to high waters, debris, and possible mud slides.
This destruction has made the day-to-day survival of the poorest people increasingly difficult. The storms have destroyed crops and homes, closed businesses, and prevented the people from obtaining clean water. Without these activities, the poor do not have the ability to obtain the daily money necessary for food or access to a healthy living situation. The destruction of the season’s crops will intensify the food crisis with significantly less produce available for sale at market.
Haiti’s children, in particular, will be greatly affected by the recent events in Haiti. Not only is there civil unrest, but also the storms have ruined the livelihoods of their parents. With no money to buy food and future income producing crops destroyed, many children will not be able to attend school this fall. In such desperate situations as this, families must make choices as to who will be saved in a flood and who will eat each day. These are choices no person ever desires to make but even as I write this letter to you, the people of Haiti face this reality.
I would like to thank all of you for your prayers and support. Prayer is a powerful force against trouble, darkness, and trials. Thank you as well to those who are supporting us spiritually during this time of sorrow. Please know, too, that Haiti is also in great need of direct material support. The people have great courage and staunch hearts in the face of these events; however, they cannot live on courage alone. They must have sufficient food and clean water. Please pray and consider how you may help the Haitian people in these troubling times.
May God bless you,
The Rev. Kesner Ajax,
Aid checks may be made out to:
Episcopal Diocese of Haiti
c/o Lynx Air
P.O. Box 407139
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33340-7139
011 509 3445 3346
011 509 3724 8376