July Stand-by, August a Must, September Remember and October…OVER? Not in Haiti and certainly not now. In recent years the 10th and 11th months in Haiti are this educational weather ditty’s August, October and November a Must. As the rains have rearranged this hurricane jingle they have also rearranged Haiti’s rivers to destroy homes and lives, numerous Haitians are now living in temporary shelters.
MINUSTAH got off to a bad start. Initially, the force was content to sit back and guard government buildings while Port au Prince became increasingly unstable. The rationale was that they were there to keep the peace, not to be the national police.
We often write about the importance of education....for empowerment, for health, for business, for the environment, or in short, for change. Education is complementary, if not neccesary for success in all other sectors. Sadly, education is often neglected.
A few months ago, perhaps in August, I received an email in my inbox that was interesting enough not to delete but not enticing to read immediately. So it sat in my inbox until about a week ago. It was a link to an online game called Haiti The Cost of Life hosted on UNICEF’s website.
Below is an article I was reading in the International Herald Tribune entitled, "Haiti's Usually Raucous Day of the Dead Solemn After Flood Deaths". I was struck by a quote by Dessaville Espady who said "Each of these trees is a life spirit. The more trees we cut, the more we suffer"
Members of the Haiti Innovation Community are by now no doubt familiar with the organization Partners in Health and the pionerring work their team has done in Haiti bringing community based health care to the lowest possible resource settings, and in particular, developing novel new approaches to treating both HIV/AIDS and Tuberculosis.
Once upon a time, Haiti was a tourist destination. This is not unusual as most Carribean countries do have tourism to some extent. You can still see, throughout Haiti, facilities that used to be intended for tourist but are no more.
Per the article below, a U.S. Congressional Delegation visiting Haiti to assess the extent of flood damage from tropical storms had to finish the trip early and return stateside as a result of another approaching tropical storm. In a country that is both deforested and has limited infrastructure, storms can have very serious consequences.
It would be an under-statement to say that Haiti is a hungry country. Population growth, deforestation, and a weak economy are just a few reasons. Hunger also contributes to instability in Haiti - building a functional democracy that can endure over the long term is a challenge when many do not know where their next meal is coming from.
Is a Constitution a living document? If it cannot be changed, does this make it more relevant or does it become less relevant as a people, country, and its government changes? There is a tradition in Latin America of scrapping and re-drafting Constitutions entirely. Some countries have had more than fifteen in their existance.