Present in Haiti before Hurricane Matthew hit, Handicap International’s local teams supported by emergency specialists, are preparing to supply aid to the most vulnerable people. More than 1.4 million people now need immediate assistance. As the death toll continues to rise, hundreds of thousands of people are still unable to access humanitarian aid in some areas of the country.
Traumatic stress caused by war is a ticking time bomb for countries trying to rebuild society 10/10/16
Mental health problems in people affected by the conflicts in Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Libya, and Ukraine are leaving an entire generation traumatised by armed violence. Often neglected, mental health disorders linked to this type of trauma can have severe repercussions on the whole of society and impede its reconstruction.
Hurricane Matthew: Race against the clock as casualty numbers threaten to overwhelm health centres 10/10/16
As the death toll in Haiti soars to more than 1,000 after the passage of Hurricane Matthew, humanitarian organisations including Handicap International face a race against the clock. Rising casualty numbers threaten to overwhelm the few health centres and hospitals not hit by the disaster. Large sections of the population are also at risk from epidemics.
After Hurricane Matthew hit Haiti last Tuesday, Handicap International has been mobilising its teams in the field, supported by its emergency specialists who arrived on Friday. A large part of the country has been devastated and thousands of homes destroyed. The United Nations estimates that more than 2.1 million people have been affected, of whom 1.4 million immediate assistance.
The death toll in Haiti continues to rise as assessment teams gain access to areas worst affected by Hurricane Matthew, which made landfall on Tuesday 4th October. More than 500 people are estimated to have been killed by the hurricane, which has also caused severe material damage. Handicap International’s emergency backup team arrived in Haiti on Friday.
As Haiti begins to recover from the passage of Hurricane Matthew, the impact of the disaster is still uncertain for large sections of the population, which remain isolated and without any means of communication. Hélène Robin, who is coordinating the emergency operations from Handicap International’s head office in Lyon, gave us a situation update.
Handicap International’s teams already present in Haiti are preparing to assess the damage and the essential needs of people affected by Hurricane Matthew. A backup team is expected to arrive in Haiti on Friday 6th October 9am (local time) to help organise the emergency response and facilitate access by humanitarian organisations to areas worst hit by Hurricane Matthew.
Following the passage of Hurricane Matthew, which hit Haiti on Tuesday 4th October, large swathes of the affected area remain inaccessible, making it difficult to assess the impact of the storm. The strength of the hurricane, its scale, and the poverty of the areas affected suggest significant humanitarian needs. Handicap International is preparing to send an emergency team to Haiti to assist victims of the disaster, in addition to its team already on the ground.
As Hurricane Matthew moves through the Caribbean, Handicap International plans to deploy an emergency team to Haiti in support of teams already present in the country. The team will assess needs and support people affected by the disaster. It is expected to leave within 48 hours, once affected areas become accessible again.
The eastern districts of the city of Aleppo, in northern Syria, have been the target of sustained bombing for almost two weeks now. The damage to the civilian population is truly devastating. According to the United Nations, 320 civilians have been killed, including around one hundred children. Prohibited weapons, including cluster bombs, have been used.
On 4 October 1996, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) presented the Nansen Medal Award to Handicap International “for its work on behalf of refugees and its contribution to the campaign against anti-personnel mines.” On the 20th anniversary of receiving the award, Handicap International’s co-founder, Jean-Baptiste Richardier, reflects on an important chapter in the organisation’s history.
Haiti: Handicap International prepares response as powerful Hurricane Matthew nears landfall 03/10/16
One of the most powerful Atlantic hurricanes in recent years is expected to cause flooding and landslides when it passes by Jamaica, Cuba and Haiti on Monday 3rd and Tuesday 4th October. Handicap International teams in Haiti are preparing to provide assistance to the victims of this potentially devastating natural disaster.
Thomas Hugonnier, Head of Handicap International’s Mine Action programme, oversees the organisation’s clearance activities in Iraq, which aim to protect civilians from explosive remnants of war in the country.
Soumana Almouner Touré has worked for Handicap International since 2013. Originally from Gao, he coordinates the ESSPOIR project’s activities in Mali. He talked to us about the project, which helps malnourished children recover from developmental delays in three West African countries - Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger - by providing them with physiotherapy and teaching parents to stimulate their children.
Handicap International is taking part in the Meeting of the First Committee of the General Assembly of the United Nations (disarmament and international security) in October 2016. Anne Héry, head of advocacy at Handicap International, explains why this meeting is important and the actions taken by the organisation to end the bombing of civilians.