Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Preparing for a storm

Last night we went for a walk in our community.  We stopped and visited one of our child's grandma and Mom.  We also visited several of our nannies, one of which just had a baby.  Not even 30 mins after we returned home did it start pouring.  I was thankful that I didn't get drenched.

But then my stomach started hurting as I thought about the people that we had just visited who live in mud and stick homes, whose roof's leak, who have giant holes in the side of their homes where their house is falling apart.  Here I sit in my nice sturdy house not having to worry about the storm; enjoying the fact that during the storm there will me no one at the gate needing help, the nannies will stay in the baby house and won't come asking for anything, and the internet will be out meaning my husband won't be working.  But at the same time people literally right out side my gate will be sleeping on wet beds if their lucky enough to have a bed, if not they are sleeping on a muddy floor.  People I love and care about are getting wet.  Their few possessions are getting ruined.  Their kids getting wet and sick.

I started thinking about times where we have had flooding in Washington.  The news is all over it, showing video's of neighbors helping each other fill sand bags to keep the water away.  Showing giant lines at the store buying groceries, batteries, and various supplies to help protect peoples property.

What do we do to prepare for a storm here?  Well at COTP we pick up all the kids toys, put towels in some of the windows to prevent the rain from seeping in, and Nick and I move our bed away from the window to keep it dry (we only have screens so rain can come in).

But what does the rest of Haiti do.  Nothing.  There is no way to prepare for it.  If it comes, it comes.  If they get wet they get wet.  If their house floods and they loose all their stuff, they loose all of there stuff.  There are no stores selling supplies to prepare for it.  Often there is no way to fix up their house to prevent the rain from coming in.  There is no neighbor helping neighbor.  What happens happens.

Cholera is still really bad in Haiti, and likely will be for a long time.  It's likely that this storm and all the rain will make cholera even worse.  We have taken in several kids recently whose parents have passed away from this illness, an illness that is easily cured with IV's and oral hydration packets, basic medical attention.  It's easily preventable with clean water.

Please pray that this storm passes quickly, doesn't affect any of our nannies, doesn't increase Cholera, and that it's the only one of the season.  Please pray for us over the next few weeks as we will likely have people coming to the gate asking for help as a result of this storm.  Please pray that we are able to help them.  Please pray for our nannies that work today and aren't at home with their families, comforting their children, and letting them know it'll be ok.  Please pray that the roads don't get to flooded or washed out.


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