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HAITI UPDATE: Espwa shifting to crisis relief

Protesters marching in Cite Solei, Port-au-Prince. Photo from Al Jazeera article, "Haiti: Police use tear gas, live ammunition on protesters" [Photo credit: Chandan Khanna/AFP]

As seen in recent posts and communications, Haitians are experiencing many difficulties due to ongoing protests against the president. The most devastating consequence has been the rise of violence and criminal activity affecting citizens, especially the most vulnerable in Haiti. The situation is becoming more and more critical and Pwoje Espwa is providing relief where we can.

This week the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) published its weekly status report for Haiti indicating most of what we are experiencing at Pwoje Espwa. This includes:

  • Security incidents and roadblocks affecting the execution of our programs

  • Food insecurity reaching a severe crisis for our children, staff, and families

  • Education being disrupted…our schools were closed for a majority of school days in September

  • Health sector impacts…hospitals and clinic closed; transportation issues delay service

  • Water, sanitation and hygiene compromised…cholera prevention in parts of the country are disrupted

  • Humanitarian shipments such as relief supplies and food have been blocked

The protection of children is of major concern for us and other missions, especially in light of incidents that took place at Pwoje Espwa last week. The report describes this attack stating:

On 27-28 September, one of the largest orphanages in the country was attacked by a group of armed men. All 182 children in the orphanage witnessed the violence and remain vulnerable to subsequent attacks should the national police not be able to maintain order in Les Cayes.

Our social workers, in collaboration with IBESR (Haitian child Social Services) and a local private counseling center, are providing psychological services to affected children. We are thankful for their resilient presence and dedication.

These are just some of the challenges we are facing at Pwoje Espwa, but our resolve remains strong because we know you are behind our efforts. We promise to keep you updated as tensions and protests continue.

You can review UNOCHA's report from this week here.

We need your continued help!

Your gifts will help our staff in Haiti continue to serve the children and families of our residents and staff by:

  • Providing some limited distributions of food to the most affected in our area

  • Transporting food that remains in ports via air to fill emergency needs

  • Allowing us to continue to top-off and conserve fuel, especially propane needed for cooking

  • Providing the psychological support for those children most affected by the gang intrusion of last weekend

  • Beefing up security for our property including lending fuel to police to conduct extra patrols in our area…they are affected by fuel shortages too

We ask especially that you continue with your prayers for peace in Haiti. As we ”walk with” our Haitian brothers and sisters in need, especially for the families of our kids and staff, please continue to petition for God’s comforting hand to keep all safe and under His care.

Your donation helps families and children with critical relief services during this time of devastating crisis.

Donate today.


If you have ever followed Haiti in the news, you know that it rarely makes headlines. The continued coverage of the current protests by major news outlets is evidence of the escalating crisis.

Miami Herald, "Haiti protesters ask international community to stop supporting their president"

Reuters, "Haitian protesters clash with police in new push for president's ouster"

Associated Press, "Thousands rally against Haitian president, clash with police"

Miami Herald, "That there is corruption in Haiti isn't a surprise. But then a senator admitted it openly"

Channel News Asia, "UN calls for calm in Haiti as new protest looms"

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