It’s easy to say that the 7.0 earthquake that hit Haiti shocked us all. Though much is still uncertain, a lot has happened in the following 24 hours of the ‘quake. The good news is, there’s also a lot that we can do to help.
For those who still live under a rock, a devastating earthquake occurred just 10 miles out of Port-au-prince, the capital city of Haiti, yesterday morning. It has already knocked down the president’s mansion as well as countless other hospitals, homes, and whole shantytowns. The 32 recorded aftershocks of the ‘quake have also caused a lot of damage.
The United Nations building in Port-au-prince has also collapsed, leaving officials and several peacekeepers dead. There is no estimate to the total death toll, but the number is expected by experts to be in the thousands. It is, without a doubt, the most devastating earthquake to hit the region in more than 200 years.
Fortunately, help is already on the way. President Obama issued a statement 11:45 a.m., and a transcript is available on the White House website. Obama states that among many things, his administration is working quickly to account for U.S. embassy personnel and their families in Haiti’s capital city.
The president stated that “Haiti has the full support of the U.S.,” and though “We are just now beginning to learn the extent of the devastation… we’ve mobilized resources to help rescue efforts. Military overflights have assessed the damage, and by early afternoon our civilian disaster assistance team are beginning to arrive.”
There is much we can do as well. Through the American Red Cross, UNICEF, Operation USA, and Wyclef’s “Yele Haiti,” foundation, we can donate money to provide immediate needs for food, water, temporary shelter, medical services and much more. For full details, check the Huffington Post Haiti Relief section.