News / Americas

    Haitian City of Gonaives Struggles to Help Port-au-Prince Residents

    Multimedia

    Audio

    Hundreds of thousands of people fled the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince after the city was devastated by an earthquake nearly one month ago.  At least 35,000 headed north to the town of Gonaives.  The newcomers have been welcomed, but the influx is taking a toll on the city, which is still recovering from destructive hurricanes.

    Gonaives, a three-hour drive north of Port-au-Prince, is important in Haitian history.  It is the place where the nation declared its independence from France in 1804.

    Although the city of 300,000 escaped the earthquake, it has faced repeated disasters.  In 2004 and 2008, thousands died in Gonaives when their homes were flooded during hurricanes.  The economy has not yet recovered.

    Still, Gonaives Deputy Mayor Jean Francois Adolphe says that after the earthquake struck Port-au-Prince, Gonaives officials wanted to help, and went there to arrange an evacuation.

    He says many people from Gonaives and surrounding areas who live in Port-au-Prince were brought out.  He holds up a chart that details the evacuation plan.

    Many who were injured, including thousands with no ties to this area, also came for medical treatment, food and other help.  Most are staying with local families.  Others are hospitalized.

    Adeclef Woodly, a doctor at the local hospital, is a Haitian who was trained in Cuba.  He says his hospital receives patients with the most serious injuries who need orthopedic care, patients who need amputations of arms or hands, or who have hip injuries with multiple fractures.

    Nineteen-year-old patient Logista Floxene was brought here by family members from Port-au-Prince. She says she lost one leg and the other is broken.  It happened after concrete collapsed on her.

    International aid groups, including the U.S. Agency for International Development, the U.N. Development Program and World Food Program, are providing assistance.

    But business owner Joseph Mathiado-Gustave says most of the help comes from local people.

    He says we, the people of Gonaives, are the ones that are helping the people from other places with everything from food to health care until they can get back to their own towns.

    Some people in Gonaives are able to earn an income.  A fisherman at the beach prepares a net to get ready for the day's catch.  Street vendors sell their wares across from city hall.  A cyber café is up and running, and several young men are surfing the web on laptop computers.  But others, like Klebert Celestin, are living hand to mouth and are out of work.

    "I don't have no job right now.  I don't have no job," said Celestin.
     
    Haitian Senator Youri Latortue, who represents this region, wants a plan to decentralize Haiti's government and business, and to move many people outside Port-au-Prince

    "We can't rebuild on the same place," he said. "The government and the parliament and the civil society have to look for a new plan and ask the international community to build a new fund able to finance the new plan."

    Thousands of earthquake victims still lie beneath the rubble in Port-au-Prince.  And Haitians are still burying their dead.  A funeral procession makes its way along the highway to Gonaives.  And as victims recover, they say they are looking for help in rebuilding their country. 

     

    You May Like

    US-Russia Tensions Complicate Syria War

    With a shared enemy and opposing allies, Russia and the US are working to avoid confrontation

    Video Re-opening Old Wounds in Beirut's Bullet-riddled Yellow House

    Built in neo-Ottoman style in 1920s, it is set to be re-opened in Sept. as ‘memory museum’ - bullet-riddled walls and bunkered positions overlooking city’s notorious ‘Green Line’ maintained for posterity

    Cambodian-Americans Lobby for Human Rights Resolution

    Resolution condemns all forms of political violence in Cambodia, urges Cambodian government to end human rights violations, calls for respect of press freedom

    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.
    Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territoryi
    X
    June 24, 2016 9:38 PM
    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territory

    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.
    Video

    Video Tunisian Fishing Town Searches for Jobs, Local Development Solutions

    As the European Union tries to come to grips with its migrant crisis, some newcomers are leaving voluntarily. But those returning to their home countries face an uncertain future.  Five years after Tunisia's revolution, the tiny North African country is struggling with unrest, soaring unemployment and plummeting growth. From the southern Tunisian fishing town of Zarzis, Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at a search for local solutions.
    Video

    Video 'American Troops' in Russia Despite Tensions

    Historic battle re-enactment is a niche hobby with a fair number of adherents in Russia where past military victories are played-up by the Kremlin as a show of national strength. But, one group of World War II re-enactors in Moscow has the rare distinction of choosing to play western ally troops. VOA's Daniel Schearf explains.
    Video

    Video Experts: Very Few Killed in US Gun Violence Are Victims of Mass Shootings

    The deadly shooting at a Florida nightclub has reignited the debate in the U.S. over gun control. Although Congress doesn't provide government health agencies funds to study gun violence, public health experts say private research has helped them learn some things about the issue. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
    Video

    Video Trump Unleashes Broadside Against Clinton to Try to Ease GOP Doubts

    Recent public opinion polls show Republican Donald Trump slipping behind Democrat Hillary Clinton in the presidential election matchup for November. Trump trails her both in fundraising and campaign organization, but he's intensifying his attacks on the former secretary of state. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.
    Video

    Video Muslim American Mayor Calls for Tolerance

    Syrian-born Mohamed Khairullah describes himself as "an American mayor who happens to be Muslim." As the three-term mayor of Prospect Park, New Jersey, he believes his town of 6,000 is an example of how ethnicity and religious beliefs should not determine a community's leadership. Ramon Taylor has this report from Prospect Park.
    Video

    Video Internal Rifts Over Syria Policy Could Be Headache for Next US President

    With the Obama administration showing little outward enthusiasm for adopting a more robust Syria policy, there is a strong likelihood that the internal discontent expressed by State Department employees will roll over to the next administration. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports.
    Video

    Video Senegal to Park Colorful ‘Cars Rapide’ Permanently

    Brightly painted cars rapide are a hallmark of Dakar, offering residents a cheap way to get around the capital city since 1976. But the privately owned minibuses are scheduled to be parked for good in late 2018, as Ricci Shryock reports for VOA.
    Video

    Video Florida Gets $1 Million in Emergency Government Funding for Orlando

    The U.S. government has granted $1 million in emergency funding to the state of Florida to cover the costs linked to the June 12 massacre in Orlando. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the grant Tuesday in Orlando, where she met with survivors of the shooting attack that killed 49 people. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video How to Print Impossible Shapes with Metal

    3-D printing with metals is rapidly becoming more advanced. As printers become more affordable, the industry is partnering with universities to refine processes for manufacturing previously impossible things. A new 3-D printing lab aims to bring the new technology closer to everyday use. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Big Somali Community in Minnesota Observes Muslim Religious Feast

    Ramadan is widely observed in the north central US state of Minnesota, which a large Muslim community calls home. VOA Somali service reporter Mohmud Masadde files this report from Minneapolis, the state's biggest city.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora

    More Americas News

    Video Artist Federico Uribe Turns Agents of Death Into Living Beauty

    Animal sculptures, brightly colored landscapes Uribe creates with bullet shells now on display at Adelson Gallery in New York

    Quebec Museum Offers New Connections to Culture

    City's National Museum of Fine Arts provides boost to Francophone art by doubling exhibition space, unveiling 400 new works

    Panama Opens Canal Expansion

    $5.4 billion expansion project will double shipping capacity and impact global trade routes

    TransCanada Sues US Over Keystone Pipeline Cancellation

    Oil company is seeking $15B to recover costs and other losses related to project that was to carry oil from western Canada to Gulf of Mexico refineries

    Panama Set for Official Opening of Canal Expansion

    Nine-year, $5.4B project will permit transit by new generation of cargo ships that will double capacity, affect global trade routes