Across the Haitian capital Port-au-Prince lie mounds of rubble and twisted metal where houses, shops and offices used to stand. This densely populated city is made up largely of slum areas and poor quality housing that could not withstand the force of the tremors. Now most of it lies in ruins.
The earthquake has left a staggering 1.5million people homeless. Many are living out in the open on the streets or in makeshift camps where they have little or no access to basic facilities. Even those whose homes remain standing are often too afraid to return for fear of further aftershocks.
No way out
Madame Emmanuel is one of the vast number of people who has been living in the open since the disaster. As the earthquake struck, the walls of Madame Emmanuel’s house collapsed around her. Fortunately she and her husband, who is blind, were not crushed by the falling the debris but they were trapped with no way out.
Tragically her 22-year-old niece, Emily was not so lucky. Emily had just taken a shower as the earthquake struck, and as she tried to run she was crushed by the falling walls and ceiling. She died instantly.
For hours Madame Emmanuel and her husband were trapped inside the rubble of their home. Finally some of her neighbours heard her screaming and started to try and dig her out. But with no proper equipment they had to use hammers, hacksaws and even their hands to get the couple free.
Islamic Relief has established a new camp for around 250 homeless people like Madame Emmanuel who have lost everything in the earthquake. The camp not only provides them with a safe place to live but also with clean water, food and sanitation facilities. Residents have also been provided with kitchen set and hygiene kits.
Over the coming days Islamic Relief will be providing a further 5,000 people with emergency shelter as well as setting up further camp sites for displaced people. We will also continue to provide people with food and clean, safe water to try and minimise the spread of disease.
To help us continue our aid efforts in Haiti, please donate here.