Haiti Earthquake Relief Fund
On Tuesday January 12th, a massive earthquake occurred in Haiti. According to UN estimates, thousands are likely dead and millions more have been left injured and/or homeless. Untold numbers of people remain trapped under the rubble of crumbled and collapsed infrastructure, and aid agencies are still struggling to make contact with their key personnel on the ground to assess the impact of this disaster.
With a per capita income of $3.60 per day, Haiti is the most impoverished country in the Western Hemisphere. Thus, its population is especially vulnerable to natural disasters such as Tuesday’s earthquake.
Ve’ahavta: The Canadian Jewish Humanitarian and Relief Committee has created the Haiti Earthquake Relief Fund to support relief efforts to address the urgent needs of the affected population.
Through our generous donors, we have raised $260,000 for the people of Haiti, and are now providing aid to 200 orphans at the House of Hope Orphanage in Port-au-Prince. We have also granted funds to Magen David Adom emergency relief workers on the ground, Jewish Coalition for Disaster Relief, Health Partners International of Canada, and the Ve’ahavta Volunteer Scholarship and Support Fund.
Thank you for your generous support during this time of crisis.
Click here to read a Summary of Haiti Crisis Fund Allocations, updated July 12, 2010.
As part of our efforts to assist the people of Haiti, we have helped to sponsor a volunteer, Dr. Mark Fenig, who is currently working on the ground to provide in-country relief support. Read his status reports here.
Israel is truly a light unto the nations as displayed through their world class operations in Haiti.
The field hospital depicted in the video below is run by the Israeli Defense Forces and being supported by the Jewish Coalition for Disaster Relief (JCDR), of which Ve’ahavta is the sole Canadian member. The funds that we forward to the JCDR will be used, in part, to support precisely what you see in this video.
The House of Hope Orphanage, Haiti (Pre-Earthquake)
Tuesday January 26, 2010
Good day and God bless the people of Haiti, and those who are helping the suffering. Ve’ahavta, as of Monday January 25th, has raised: $230,000 from 695 donors, an average gift of $289. Funds are coming in from various sources in the city including the students at Holy Blossom Temple. Yesterday, they brought in about $600 (a lot of it was change. It was quite beautiful).
This is a formidable amount and we are proud of our work. Yisha ko’ach to all who have contributed. If you haven’t please consider doing so.
Thus far, Ve’ahavta’s funds have been allocated as follows:
- The House of Hope Orphanage in Haiti to assist with food/water/security and eventually rebuilding.
- The American Jewish Joint Distribution Centre to support Israel medical operations in Haiti.
- The Jewish Coalition for Disaster Relief: Ve’ahavta is the sole Canadian member of the JCDR. The Coalition has thus far supported Chabad of the Dominican Republic in their efforts to successfully transport emergency supplies overland into Haiti, as well as the the Afya Foundation, which facilitates emergency supplies to be distributed via its partners in Haiti. The Coalition has also supported an emergency solar lamp distribution project, as well as a support program to provide support and counseling to expatriate Haitians living in the US.
- Health Partners International Canada (HPIC), long time partners of ours who distribute pharmaceuticals all over the world. This $5,000 will be used to sponsor over $50,000 worth of pharmaceuticals and medical supplies to Haiti.
- Ve’ahavta Volunteer Scholarship & Support Fund: This is a fund that has been created to provide financial subsidies to volunteers travelling to Haiti to provide relief services.
Thank you to Barry Picov who introduced us to the House of Hope Orphanage and has encouraged us to play a pivotal role in assisting them during these terrible times and as we move into the future. Well done Barry!! Thank you too to Sarah Zelcer for managing this operation with fervor and zest.
We wish the people of Haiti well. To be Jewish is to respond when called upon; it is to roll up one’s sleeves and help. We are doing both!
Sunday January 24, 2010
- Ve’ahavta’s Starry Nights 2009 keynote speaker, Mia Farrow, writes about the weaknesses of international crisis response in Haiti despite being “prepared”. Click here to view The Wall Street Journal article.
- Through all this hardship and suffering, the Jewish community and its children are showing their ongoing support to Ve’ahavta’s Earthquake Relief Fund. Attached here, here, and here are beautiful expressions of their commitment to helping the people of Haiti.
- Yisha Ko’ach (well done) to all the students and staff at USDS for participating in a tikun olam activity for Haiti, collecting and sorting 1,603 pairs of shoes to be sent to the people of Haiti.
It is paramount that we recognize how blessed we are, and respond per our commitment to “Never Again” when we are able to. God bless the people of Haiti.
Thursday January 21, 2010
As of Thursday January 21st, with the generous support of its donors, Ve’ahavta has raised $180,000 for the Haiti Earthquake Relief Fund.
Monday January 18, 2010
Ve’ahavta has collected $100,000 for our Haiti Earthquake Relief Fund. We have exceeded our expectations and as of this morning have used up our matching funds. We will be applying to the Canadian government, however, for funds to be matched.
Thank you to all those individuals who have committed to Ve’ahavta’s Earthquake Relief Fund so far. We will update you on our activities including assisting the orphans of The House of Hope in Gressier, Haiti with required food and water.
The situation there continues to be desperate and we are working closely with our partners to ensure an immediate response. Well done in joining this very serious and important tikun olam response.
Sunday January 17, 2010
House of Hope has three days of food left and is concerned what will happen after that. We are working toward getting relief operations to them through our contacts with Israel, Mia Farrow (UNICEF) and our partnership with Canadian Save the Children and The Jewish Coalition for Disaster Relief.
Our movement is slow because the roads are down and little work is being done outside Port-au-Prince. The orphanage has 200 children and has little damage. It is about 12 kilometers away from the epicenter of the quake. That being said the surrounding village of Gressier lost 800 of its 2,500 people – an enormous number of causalities.
We are concerned that the orphans may be targeted because they have enough food and water for three short days, as well as a generator. This has been supplied by local philanthropists, Ajax Downs as well as Canadian Feed the Children.
Please consider this situation as very serious and assist us through funds. Money will help us purchase food and/or what is ever required for the orphans.
Thank you, B’shalom.
Thursday January 14, 2010
Thank you for contributing to Ve’ahata’s Haiti Earthquake Fund. The community is responding very aggressively and willing to assist those affected so greatly by the recent natural disaster in Haiti.
Ve’ahavta has determined so far that we will be helping an orphanage in Haiti’s capital, which sits 12 kilometers away from the epicenter of the earthquake. The orphanage is called House of Hope (http://tohopeforhaiti.ca/uploads/houseofhopemay2009.pdf) and houses about 200 children. An individual who supports House of Hope sits on our board and has encouraged us to become involved.
Here is a miraculous story about this orphanage. Please read this e-mail which we received two days after the earthquake occurred. It is a message of hope within a sea of tragedy. We at the office were terrified that all the children had been killed but instead read this from our board member:
We have great News… Alice just called me from the Orphanage in Gressier Haiti. She told me that most of the village was flattened and there are so many people dead and injured on the streets with very little to help them with. The MIRACLE is that the entire 200 kids and staff are all Alive with no Injuries. The Orphanage has suffered some damage but can be repaired. They have many people who are on the streets coming to the orphanage for food and water and power and comfort. They are relying on House of Hope as they always do when the times are tough. She has and always does outreach to her community with what she has to offer. Now she is outreaching with saving as many lives as she can.
Alice told me that she has water and power and food for a week at this point (I can just imagine though once more people start coming). We should all be so happy… Even though she did not know it, she was prepared and did handle this crisis better than all as they SURVIVED unhurt and when she talked to me she said they were busy cooking lunch….What a great day!! She then said to me all she wanted to do was to finish her school so the kids can have an education…..incredible!!!!!!!!!!!!!
We will keep you updated regarding our fund, and how we will continue to assist the people of Haiti. Once again , if you would like to donate to the Haiti Earthquake Relief Fund, please click here. If you have already contributed, we thank you for your support.
Note that Ve’ahavta has a matching donor for every dollar you give, in addition to which the Canadian government is also matching dollar for dollar. So if, for example, you make a $100 donation, the ultimate benefit is that people in Haiti will receive $300. Any donation you make today will make TRIPLE the difference.
If you are interested in on-the-ground volunteer work in Haiti, International Medical Corps (IMC) is currently accepting applications for volunteer doctors and nurses on their website, www.imcworldwide.org.
Please feel free to e-mail us with any questions at email@example.com.
Avrum, Founding Director of Ve’ahavta