From the ground | First person accounts from Haiti
Many of people in Haiti are blogging, sending emails or tweets updating family, friends or the non-profit they work for. With their permission, the Times will be publishing excerpts of their updates.
On January 13, 2010, an earthquake measuring 7.0 rocked the impoverished nation of Haiti. In the hours that followed, reports of the incredible damage to both the city and its inhabitants began to emerge. Even at this point the total extent is unknown. The only clear message coming from Haiti is that the earthquake has created a disaster that the area has never seen.
In an effort to get a full picture of what is going on in Haiti, the Times contacted a few non-profits as well as others who were living in Haiti at the time of the quake or who have left to provide aid to the country. Many of these people are blogging, sending emails or tweets updating family, friends or the non-profit they work for. With their permission, the Times will be publishing excerpts of their updates.
Licia Betor, Haiti Rescue Center
Licia describes herself as "a wife and mother to three wonderful and wild boys." She has lived in Haiti since 1995 as a part of the non-profit Real Hope for Haiti organization that her family runs. She works in the Haiti Rescue Center which houses about 60 children and treats drop-in patients as well.
Her brother, Casey Zachary, currently lives in the Seattle area.
Excerpts from haitirescuecenter.wordpress.com.
All the details and plans are not worked out yet. But we are planning to send the three boys out tomorrow with Anna. We wanted to keep the family together here in Haiti. But the kids are being exposed to so many things. The Haitian TV stations have no censorship and show everything. The workers talk and the kids hear. They are having bad dreams, we are running out of food. So we all talked yesterday and decided to send them out to my brother Casey and his family that live in Washington State. This has been a very difficult decision for us to make but we feel for now it is the best one for our kids. I need to stay and help run everything here. I still have about 60 kids that are under my care. They are still sleeping outside and we are still trying to secure a place to move them to. Continue reading.
Dr. Dan Diamond
Dr. Diamond is a family physician in private practice in Silverdale, Washington and serves as Clinical Assistant Professor for the UW School of Medicine. He traveled to Haiti to volunteer at the UN field hospitals with a group sponsored by Medical Teams International and is writing blog posts from his Web site Powerdyme.com.
This evening I helped to amputate the foot of an 11 year old boy but he later died. His mother lost his sister in the quake as well. So sad. I helped to put him in a body bag and we put him in the refer trailer with the other bodies. The smell is horrific and overwhelming. The mother is so destitute that she later asked me to get the money she put under his pillow. It was about 20 Haitian dollars. She was numb and just sat there. Non-verbally I tried to communicate with her that I cared. Our eyes locked and I knew she knew that I cared and that we did all we could. Without functioning operating rooms many of these people will be dead in a matter of days.
Tomorrow we are going to do what we can to get ours open and King's Hospital. I'm also hoping to do a helicopter survey tomorrow with Stephanie and Bill and perhaps the woman from USAID. As busy and smelly as it is sitting here outside the UN hospital, I know I will never be able to comprehend the full scale of this disaster.
I'm grateful for the cool breeze this evening.