Today we travelled with Edzaire Paul, Director of Methodist Schools, and Kerline Felix who also works in the Methodist offices, along the coast south-west from the capital to Petit Goave, close to the epicentre of the earthquake on 12th January. With the mountains on our left and the sea on our right it would have been beautiful if it were not for the increasing number of collapsed and damaged buildings along the roadside.
On any available empty space, whether it is farmland, a football field or a town’s park, camp sites had sprung up on them. The tents and shelters told a story of where the aid had come from, by far the majority from USAID and UNICEF, but lots of other organisations were clearly involved in supplying much needed emergency shelter including Shelter Box, Samaritan’s Purse and Oxfam through the British Disaster Emergency Committee.
We were told that many people are staying in tents rather than sleeping in buildings that are habitable, so great is the fear of a further earthquake.
Just beyond Petit Goave we visited
We returned to Petit Goave and went to the Institute for Rural Life which was established in 1962. We were welcomed by Superintendent minister Revd Ralph Denizard and with freshly cut coconuts. It used to be a site for agricultural training with buildings for livestock and teaching blocks. Sadly it had to be closed for financial reasons, although an office running a successful micro-finance project continues. This is the sort of project the Church in
At the nearby Methodist clinic, which offers general care to each day but also hosts a visiting eye surgeon once a week, two of the main buildings, including the simple operating room, remain functional, only the out-patient area was destroyed.
Finally we also visited the large
As we returned to