Goto main content

Hurricane Matthew: affected population faces growing hardship

Emergency
Haiti

More than a week after Haiti was hit by Hurricane Matthew, the misery of its victims continues to deepen. The worst hit areas remain difficult to access and food insecurity is growing by the day. Handicap International has expanded its emergency teams to aid the most isolated vulnerable people.

Handicap International's teams are working with injured people in Les Cayes, after the hurricane hit Haiti last week.

Handicap International's teams are working with injured people in Les Cayes, after the hurricane hit Haiti last week. | © B. Almeras / Handicap International

"It is still very difficult to access people affected by the hurricane,” explains Hélène Robin, head of Handicap International’s emergency operations.

“The major roads are almost impassable for lorries transporting humanitarian aid and there have been no large-scale food distributions yet. There’s nothing left to eat, the crops have been destroyed, and the rare stores not flattened by the storm have been looted. The threat of famine is causing families a lot of distress.”

Food distress has heightened security tensions across the island. Regular incidents have been reported on the road linking Les Cayes to Jérémie in the province of Grand’Anse, in Jérémie itself and up to Port-au-Prince. Handicap International’s security adviser is expected to arrive in Haiti within days to ensure the organisation’s operations are not jeopardised and to provide support to teams already in the field.

“Our priority is to get humanitarian aid to casualties, families who have lost everything, and the most isolated people,” stresses Hélène Robin.

To overcome the problem of road closures, the organisation is also beefing up its team of logistics specialists and plans to organise humanitarian aid deliveries by sea using local carriers with boats. The aim is to provide NGOs working in isolated regions with their supplies of equipment and to distribute them without further delay.

A team of four experts has been deployed to the city of Les Cayes to case-manage injured people. A project manager specialised in the specific needs of disabled people, a psychosocial project manager, a physiotherapist and a social worker will assess the state of the hospitals and rehabilitation services before providing support to local facilities. If necessary, they will also supply mobility aids such as wheelchairs and crutches.

Lastly, Handicap International continues to assess the humanitarian situation in the northwest of the island, also seriously affected by Hurricane Matthew. Few humanitarian actors currently work in the area, despite the population’s significant needs.

Emergency appeal

Handicap International UK has launched an emergency appeal to support disabled and vulnerable people affected by the disaster in Haiti.

Please donate online now or text HIUK01 £5 to 70070.

Date published: 14/10/16

COUNTRIES

Where we work

Read more

HI assists the most vulnerable as violence hits northern Mozambique
© HI
Emergency

HI assists the most vulnerable as violence hits northern Mozambique

For several days, HI’s teams have been working to guide and assist vulnerable populations - pregnant women, older people, people with disabilities, and children - displaced by recent fighting in Palma, northern Mozambique. They urgently need access to water, food and shelter.

A devastating fire in Freetown leaves thousands homeless and in shock
© HI
Emergency

A devastating fire in Freetown leaves thousands homeless and in shock

On the evening of 24 March 2021, a terrible fire burnt down the shanty town of Susan's Bay in Freetown, capital city of Sierra Leone. Humanity & Inclusion (HI) is providing psychological support to the victims.

HI deploys teams in wake of Rohingya camps fire
© HI
Emergency

HI deploys teams in wake of Rohingya camps fire

On 22nd March, a major blaze ripped through the Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh. More than 40,000 people were directly affected and lost their shelter. Eleven people died and over 550 people were injured, according to initial reports. Humanity & Inclusion's (HI’s) teams have been deployed to assist the most vulnerable.

FOLLOW US