News / USA

As World Attention Wanes, Miami Church Increases Effort to Help Haiti

These ambulances, parked behind Notre Dame d'Haiti's school yard,  were donated to Haiti by the city of Chicago
These ambulances, parked behind Notre Dame d'Haiti's school yard, were donated to Haiti by the city of Chicago
TEXT SIZE - +

Father Reginald Jean-Marie of Notre Dame d'Haiti Catholic church in Miami's Little Haiti community admits donations have significantly slowed down, seven weeks after the earthquake that ravaged Haiti on January 12. But he isn't discouraged - in fact - he is thankful for the generosity many have shown toward his native land. One day after the earthquake, the church, housed in a mustard yellow building, tucked behind an iron gate in the heart of "Ti Ayiti" mobilized to help survivors.

Father Reginald Jean-Marie travels to Haiti almost weekly to help earthquake survivors
Father Reginald Jean-Marie travels to Haiti almost weekly to help earthquake survivors

"It was a big shock for the community," Father Jean-Marie recalls. He says the church organized a memorial mass for the victims the next day. In addition, a "collection center" was set up for people to donate clothing, shoes, water and food items for the people of Haiti.  

Father Jean-Marie has led three medical missions to the country since January and will head back to Port-au-Prince March 4 along with 16 doctors, nurses, counselors, three priests and nuns. He says his church partnered with the archdiocese of Port-au-Prince for this mission, which will focus on those whom assistance has not yet reached. After an assessment of the actual needs, the team will tend to earthquake survivors in the Notre Dame de Lourdes, St. Louis Roi de France and Carrefour parishes.

Palettes of bottled water destined for Haiti are neatly placed in Notre Dame d'Haiti church's parking lot, 3 Mar 2010
Palettes of bottled water destined for Haiti are neatly placed in Notre Dame d'Haiti church's parking lot, 3 Mar 2010

"This is a church-to-church effort," he explains, adding that the Haitian government is not involved. During the current mission, tent-camp residents will get badly-needed medical assistance, medicine, water and food. The aid is not limited to Catholics, Father Jean-Marie stresses, anyone in those areas who are in need of help can stop by.

"One of the most wonderful experiences I had as a priest was to find Protestants leading prayer inside a Catholic church," the priest said, " and everyone was praying together! You see, the terrible tragedy that happened, I believe is inviting us toward that kind of expression of faith."

In addition to food and medical assistance, the St. Francois des Salles church in Port-au-Prince and Gonaives hospital will receive ambulances. Two used ambulances were donated to the church by the city of Chicago,  thanks to a joint effort by the city of Miami and Rotary Club.  The Rotary Club has a boat that will transport the ambulances to Haiti March 4.

"Every two weeks, we'll be traveling to a different area," Father Jean-Marie explained. "We aim to reach the sports center in Carrefour next. We'll be rotating where we go."

Father Jean Marie says the Notre Dame d'Haiti mission aims to cover cities in the southern peninsula and then move towards the north and northwest where many earthquake survivors are now living.

Looking toward the future, the Haitian priest urges people to continue praying for Haiti.

"Stay positive and hopeful that something good can come out of this tragedy," he said. "Don't be afaid to give... think big and aim high."

You May Like

Analysts Warn of Regional Proxy Conflict in Afghanistan

Analysts warn if Kabul’s neighbors do not start to cooperate, competing desires for influence could deteriorate into a bloody proxy war in the country More

Saudi Intelligence Chief Replaced

Bandar bin Sultan came under criticism for supporting al Qaida, prompting King Abdallah to wrest Syria operations away from him in February, handing them to Interior Minister Prince Mohammed bin Nayef More

Poetry Magazine editor Don Share talks what makes a good poem with VOA's David Byrd

What makes a good poem? And is poetry as viable an art form as it once was? To find out, VOA's David Byrd spoke to Don Share, the editor of Poetry Magazine. More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid