Hurricane Matthew devastated Haiti

On the 4th of October 2016, hurricane Matthew raged over Haiti. It caused widespread destruction and catastrophic loss. The impoverished nation was just recovering from the earthquake in 2010 and an ongoing cholera outbreak after tragedy stroke again.

Three weeks after the hurricane I see the enormous damage with my own eyes. The first things you notice are the snapped and fallen trees. If you come closer you see the damage at the houses; crumbled walls, blown away roofs and rubble everywhere. When you walk around you find out that of some houses you only see the traces; they are completely blown away. By talking to the people you see the pain, the sadness, the frustration and the anger in their eyes. You are the first person to whom they can express their feelings because everyone else in the village needs to deal with the same circumstances.

The poorest people, who lived in houses of coconut leaves and depend on the harvest for food, are the most vulnerable. Their homes are vanished, their harvest is destroyed and their family members and friends are lost. Families who literary lost everything are sheltering in schools and churches. Others are trying to rebuild their houses with the wood they can find and pieces of tarp and rope, protecting them against sun and rain. The people are resilient; they accept their lot, look after each other and start building on their future. Which must be so hard, but they just have to and they simply do it.

I can only imagine how the villages looked like before. It must have been beautiful.


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