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Haiti Recovery Volunteers

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In the days following the quake in Haiti, agencies stepped in to meet the basic needs of millions of the injured and homeless. As time goes on, the focus is naturally changing from relief to recovery. Lilla Marigza reports.

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SCRIPT:

(Locator: Port-au-Prince, Haiti)

Dr. Troy Silvernale’s parents were United Methodist missionaries in Haiti when he was born.

(Dr. Silvernale speaks French to patient)

Today he’s on a team of medical volunteers who have seen their mission shift from treating injuries sustained in the January 12th earthquake…

Bill Johnson, Trauma Nurse: “This is going to take at least another week to feel better.”

… to assessing long-term care.

Dr. Troy Silvernale, United Methodist Volunteer: “There’s several people already asking for a dentist. They need teeth pulled and I don’t do that, but we’ll try to get somebody in here who can.”

The United Methodist Church’s initial response was supplying food, clean water, and medical care in the days following the quake. Now, Haitians are asking, “What is the next step?”

Driver Oge Celin wonders how he will make a living.

Oge Celin, Driver: “If somebody came in Port-au-Prince and said, ‘Oge, I want to go see downtown,’ but for now we don’t have any downtown. If somebody say, ‘Oge, I want to go to the lookout,’ there’s no lookout. If somebody say, ‘Oge, I want to go to the shop to buy something,’ there is no shop.”

A long-term plan for Haiti must include rebuilding its capital city and the country’s economy. Melissa Crutchfield says partners like the United Methodist Committee on Relief are ready to assist.

Melissa Crutchfield, UMCOR (addressing a meeting): “…to begin to clear the rubble and begin to lay the foundation to rebuild. Longer term, rebuilding the communities, maybe rebuilding livelihoods. And we’re committed to staying here for the duration.”

While outside help is needed, the head of the Methodist Church in Haiti says the key to success will be for Haitians to take an active role in the process.

The Rev. Gesner Paul, Methodist Church of Haiti: “They must be proud of their country. The first black republic that has been independent in the world, and this is our opportunity to change the situation now. It may take years, but we can do it.”

(Little boys singing and clapping happily)

TAG:

When disaster strikes outside of the U.S., UMCOR serves as the primary channel for United Methodist assistance.

See the latest news and information on UMCOR’s relief efforts in Haiti.

You can donate online or make checks payable to UMCOR and mail to UMCOR, PO Box 9068, New York, NY 10087. Please indicate Haiti Emergency, UMCOR Advance #418325 on the memo line of your check. One hundred percent of gifts made to this advance will go to help the people of Haiti.

Posted: February 24, 2010