Episcopal Relief & Development Releases One-Year Haiti Report

January 4, 2011

On January 12, 2010, a devastating earthquake hit Haiti, leveling scores of buildings and claiming over 217,000 lives. At the center of major relief efforts was the Episcopal Diocese of Haiti, the largest diocese of The Episcopal Church, and long-term partner of Episcopal Relief & Development. Led by the Rt. Rev. Jean Zaché Duracin, the Haitian Church has long provided programs and basic services in communities throughout the country. The Church in Haiti has a network of relationships that were essential to the rapid delivery of assistance and supplies after the earthquake.

In memory of lives lost and in honor of the ongoing work in Haiti, Episcopal Relief & Development is releasing a report outlining the accomplishments of the past year. Through the generosity of donors worldwide and in partnership with the Diocese of Haiti and its relief and development arm, CEDDISEC (Centre Diocésain de Développement Intégré et de Secours), Episcopal Relief & Development has supported a wide variety of locally led, community-based recovery projects.

“The Church of Haiti has been a key leader in the earthquake response,” said Rob Radtke, President of Episcopal Relief & Development. “Bishop Duracin and dedicated members of the diocese have been working since the very early stages of rescue efforts to meet the needs of people who had lost everything. Now they are overseeing projects that are benefiting thousands of people. It has been a difficult year, and though there is still much to be done, there has been great progress.”

The Haiti One-Year Report summarizes activities and achievements in two phases of the recovery effort: Phase I (January-March 2010) activities concentrated on rescue and relief, while Phase II (April-December 2010) focused on the transition from relief to recovery. Some initiatives will continue through 2011, including Cash-for-Work projects, the construction of provisional homes and installation of water and sanitation systems. These programs will help individuals and families increase their economic independence, and promote household and community security. Phase III programs (ongoing from January 2011) will center on recovery and sustainable development.

“Haitians have the strength and determination to rebuild their country, together as communities and in communion with their churches,” said Tammi Mott, Episcopal Relief & Development’s Program Officer for Haiti. “Episcopal Relief & Development is supporting the Diocese of Haiti as it empowers Haitians to actively engage at every stage of the recovery process.”

To learn more about diocesan and CEDDISEC recovery activities supported by Episcopal Relief & Development, visit our Haiti page.

While Episcopal Relief & Development is primarily assisting the Diocese of Haiti with its community-focused activities, the Episcopal Church Foundation is coordinating a Church-wide campaign, on behalf of The Episcopal Church, to raise funds for the reconstruction of the Holy Trinity Cathedral complex. For more information, visit www.EpiscopalChurch.org/HaitiAppeal.

Episcopal Relief & Development’s response to the disaster in Haiti is unique not only in size, but also in approach. Staff members have spent significant amounts of time in Haiti, accompanying and providing support to local partners as they carry out their work. Tammi Mott reflects on a year of accompaniment in her latest blog post.

To support Episcopal Relief & Development’s work, please visit www.episcopalrelief.org or call 1.800.334.7626, ext. 5129.

Episcopal Relief & Development is the international relief and development agency of the Episcopal Church of the United States and an independent 501(c)(3) organization. The agency takes its mandate from Jesus’ words found in Matthew 25. Its programs work towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals. Together with the worldwide Church and ecumenical partners, Episcopal Relief & Development rebuilds after disasters and empowers people by offering lasting solutions that fight poverty, hunger and disease, including HIV/AIDS and malaria.