Conditions in Port au Prince

Posted below is the video that we just produced with Partners in Health and the Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti to raise awareness about worsening conditions in the hundreds of Internally Displaced Persons camps in and around Port au Prince.

Please  sign the petition that the IJDH has organized to persuade the international organizations to start delivering aid faster and more efficiently to the thousands of Haitian people that desperately need it.

8 thoughts on “Conditions in Port au Prince

  1. Gegen das Vergessen: Die Bedingungen in Port-au-Prince…

    Das New Media Advocacy Project hat zusammen mit Partnern im Gesundheitswesen und des Instituts für Gerechtigkeit und Demokratie in Haiti ein Video online gestellt, dass den Kampf in den Flüchtlingslagern auf Haiti zeigt. Die Regenzeit beginnt…

  2. It is horrible to be in Haiti right now, that is all there is to it. It was a catastrophic tragedy followed by so much struggle to help, some good, some well intentioned but misjudged, some downright bad.

    But I see no solution in your video. I actually know one of the camps this is filmed in, you failed to show the well functioning clinic, water points, gravel laid down as shelters are upgraded to help with the rains, spaces for children packed with activities and community leaders who meet daily.

    I’m sorry that the work we are doing doesn’t meet your standards, and heaven knows we could do so much better. But perhaps before you, and even more shamefully Partners in Health who are working in the same conditions, and with the same mixed success as everyone down here, start casting stones about, try to come up with productive advice.

    I would give anything to be able to do my job better, to be able to help Haitians more effectively. Instead of producing bombastic videos full of half truths, why not help those on the ground to improve, do some thinking for us as we try to help others survive.

    1. I appreciate your comment, though I do disagree. Note the the videos are not intended to stand alone, but are part of larger advocacy and education efforts by Partners in Health, Zamni Lasante, the Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti and their grassroots partners, to improve the delivery of aid where it’s needed – including offering advice, assistance, and solutions to other NGOs on the ground. I would also hesitate to call the videos “bombastic.” But that said, please let us know which camp that we shot in that has a well functioning clinic and water points.

  3. I think Here Now is missing the point of the video. I do not see that it is holding the relief up to filmmakers’ standards, it looks to me like it is the Haitians speaking, saying that the relief effort is not meeting their standards, which seem pretty reasonable: food that isn’t spoiled, housing that keeps them dry when it rains, etc.

    It also seems reasonable to me that people living in such conditions when all that money has been raised for them should be casting stones, and laudable that NMap brought those voices to wider public.

    In the video, and the accompanying petition,, there are clear solutions articulated:

    1) better coordination among aid donors and providers;

    2) allowing more participation of earthquake victims in the planning and implementation of earthquake response projects; and

    3) more transparency about where and how Haiti earthquake funds are spent.

    The reality is that over $1,000 per earthquake victim had been raised when the film was made. That’s enough to get people a decent tent.

  4. In response to Here Now’s message:
    I am the filmmaker who stood in these camps in March of 2010 and worked with NMAP to produce this video for the U.N. Donors Meeting in 2010. You seem to have a very narrow perspective on what was happening in Haiti around that time. I first arrived as a paramedic working in Cite Soleil and throughout PAP on Jan. 16th. My group NYC Medics stayed for two weeks and dispatched 13 teams throughout the region over the next several months.
    Although I can tell you that there were slight improvements made to the Haitian infrastructure in regards to medical care, food, water, and shelter, when I returned in March, the conditions had transmogrified from rubble to IDP camps festering with no sanitation, rotting food, crime, and little to no water. What you see on this video isn’t a result of me or my crew cherry picking what we felt would make compelling footage but a reflection of the Haitian sentiment at the time. I went there to document the Haitian perspective which, as it turns out, is much different that what foreigners would like to believe it is.
    I give you my utmost praise for the work you have done- Haiti needs all it can get. Groups such as MSF, Global Medic, and PIH all have done remarkable work. But please don’t let yourself come under the conclusion that this was enough. One would have to be blind to stand were we stood and think otherwise.
    I worked very closely with a remarkable PIH MD, fluent in Creole, who visited these camps with me. The answers you hear from Haitians in the video are real. To be honest, the conditions in nearly every camp we visited were deplorable. They resembled the slum conditions in Kibera, Kenya.
    My intention was to challenge all of us to do better. Where did the donated money go? Why are Red Cross red tickets being sold on the black market? Why are landslides of sewage running through the camps when it begins to rain? Why are the insides of nearly every shelter swamped with water? I challenge you to stay in one of those IDP camps for a week and emerge with the same opinion you have now.

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