rumi_clarke_logo-RUMI & CLARKE: Inspirational Writing Awards Project

- LM BROCHURE - 2010 (jpg)
- Brochure (inside)

Presented by: Department of Public Information of the United Nations - Non Governmental Organizations
UN DPINGO Briefings - Dated: January 13, 2011 - Conference Room #2, NLB

Disaster Relief and Preparedness: Haiti: A Year Laterhaiti_panel

Report by: Cevat CIVAN*, Lightmillennium.Org
1st Alternate Representative to the UN DPINGO

Photos by: Sirin CENGIZALP and also Cevat CIVAN

- More on the UN/DPI-NGO Briefings on the Lightmillennium.Org

Background: On 12 January 2010, a massive earthquake struck Haiti, reducing much of the county, including its densely populated capital, Port-au-Prince, to rubble. It was the worst earthquake in the region in more than 200 years as well as the worst disaster ever confronted by the United Nations. The magnitude 7.0 earthquake delivered a severe blow to the country's already unstable economy and infrastructure and, as the UN Secretary-General stated at the time, “inflicted further suffering on people who have already borne far, far more than their fair share of life’s injustice”. Poorly constructed buildings and shanties were destroyed or seriously compromised, including 3,000 schools. Crushed buildings from the earthquake still spill out onto sidewalks today. A study by the Inter-American Development Bank has estimated that the total cost of the disaster was between $7.2 billion to $13.2 billion, based on a death toll from 200,000 to 250,000. The death toll was later revised by Haiti's President to upwards of 300,000. The situation was further exacerbated with the outbreak of cholera, as confirmed by the Government of Haiti on 21 October 2010. The Ministry of Public Health has reported that, as of 1 January 2011, the outbreak has resulted in 3,651 deaths. Cholera medicine and other medical supplies are urgently needed to strengthen the cholera response at the same time that the country’s reconstruction efforts continue.

UN DPINGO Relations presented a panel of experts, who were familiar with the situation in Haiti to examine its current state of affairs, nearly a year after the catastrophic earthquake of 12 January 2010.

Ms. Maria Luisa Chavez, Chief, NGO Relations, Department of Public Information (DPI) moderated the Briefing.

In her opening remarks she indicated the effect of Haiti earthquake on January 12, 2010 and on it’s people and consequences thereof. It was a disaster of monumental proportions involving death of over 220 000 people, over 1000 people injured or permanently disabled and 1.5 million people left homeless. Haiti’s Capital, Port-au-Prince was left in ruins and country’s already fragile economy and its infrastructure was severely damaged. This caused massive displacements and enormous hardships in peoples’ daily life including lack of clean water, inadequate access to health care, sexual violence, unsanitary conditions etc. Country’s unstability was further aggravated by to public health conditions and that has further resulted in additio9nal 3,600 deaths due to cholera outbreak.

Mr. David Carden, Chief of the early warning and continuous planning section of United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), spoke about general condition after Haiti’s earthquake, what UN and other organization did, and how they communicated with each other. The efforts of the government of Haiti, the humanity and world community at large, involved in the relief efforts since earthquake of January, 12, 2010.

Mr. Carden said that eight agencies were providing water to more than 1 million people every day, food to 2 million people every month, and helping keep 2.2 million children in school, coordinating efforts for protection of women and particularly children from violence.

He mentioned that 800 000 people have been waiting for home shelter, employment and schooling for children. Immediately after earthquake, the priority was emergency shelters and this one successfully achieved. Next step was transitional shelters and finally long term shelters. As of end of December 2010, more than 401 000 provisional shelters have been built, with 120 189 planed for by the end of 2011.

Mr. Carden pointed the earthquake was difficult situation to respond to due to variety of different reason.

Due to the scale of the proportion of disaster and its effect on the peoples effected affected, the impact on the national infrastructure, the pre-existing structural problems in Haiti being weak in the first place and its effect on government was beyond measurement. He estimates that it would take about a year’s time to change the things around. He allows appealed for world’s generosity that we saw in 2010 and hope it will continue in 2011 and as long as needed.


Mr. Bruno Lemarquis:
Chief, Central Strategy and Policy Cluster, United Nations Development Programme
He lived in Haiti seven years.

He focused on three things which were disaster Risk Reduction and preparedness, degree management and employment generation, and early recovery and longer term constraction.

Their group afforded to work hand in hand with Haiti government leadership, Haitian`s partners, Haitian`s communities, international partners included NGO communities for disaster risk reduction and preparedness. They had overmuch disaster restrictions agenda, disaster risk, throughout contraction process, throughout development process to development of public policies and public investments. It was not over night thing. They needed strong national leadership, very strong political will to push this agenda, good coordinated coherent action, plan and resources.

He said that many NGOs play very critical role in this field at particular community level, when it was coming to plan local level Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR).

He told about degree management and job creations for early recovery and longer term constraction together. He said that it was very important core of the reconstructions process. In first few mounts after earthquake in UNDP, their attention was on short term job creation. They managed to create quarter million jobs in Haiti. They worked very close some organization such as WFP, food and cash solutions, housing facilities, camp process, income generating activities.

Ms. Denise Brown, Senior Donor Relations Officer, World Food Programme (WPF), spoke about how WPF and other NGOs work at Haiti after earthquake.

She said that they did immediate plan to reach over 2 million people over 2 week period thru 16 districts in Haiti. They had some fundamental questions and had hart time answering, how to organize and distribute to this number of people, and highly congested urban area where infrastructure had either been destroyed or was like the airport have congested where our own warehouse are had destroyed. After six weeks the earthquake, WPF`s NGO partners reached 4 million Haitians through the serve operation. It was very difficult operation.

Ten NGOs identified have been worked with WPF. There were not have the clean criteria and the process was not transparent for selecting their partners. Also, they worked with military partners that they have not usually worked with them.

They talked with government, local authorities, and NGO partners. They were making that shift to the long term food security after one year. Therefore, they focused on school meals and nutrition program for children and mothers. They were reaching to 2 million people each month. The school meals, daily hot meals, they supported the programs with their partners and reached just over a million children. She explained that, the priority is in that program, UNICEF and government got kids back to school and kept them in the school for investing future, and investing human capital. Also, one other thing they were purchasing food at local market in this program. They try to buy milk, rice in Haiti. It was not easy because the rise was quite expensive in Haiti. But there was a commitment from the donor to purchase at the local market.

In additions, she told about emergency preparedness. She said that they had the comprehensive emergency preparedness plan. Their plan was last year government and partners making sure logistic hubs, tracks, storage in different location surround the country. They had preposition food 32 different locations and could feed a million people for 6 weeks in case of other disasters.

They have worked currently with 76 Haitians NGOs, 29 international NGOs, and military.

Ms. Taina Bien-Aime, Executive Director, Equality Now: Her speech was about crime especially sexual violence to women or girls.

Some statics pointed 70% of women or girls subjected to violence or sex and 38% of girls with ages of 10 – 18.

Pre-earthquake, 42% household is run by single women. The new law was made in 2005. For this all the credit goes to women in Haiti.

She said that people ask where the pledge money was, why the person, living in camps, was sexually harassed, and why this was not being done to prevent.

Past year many articles were printed about women gang raped, talk of lack of security, lack of privacy, lack of government response, lack of investigation, lack of prosecution, and lack of access to courts.


Her solution was international community must involve sexual violence to women or girls in Haiti and cannot just do with project. This problem solution does not possible in one generation.
She said that President Obama at the memorial spoke “Hopefully this makes us better citizens in the honor of those and we salute the country and protection of human rights.”

Her wish II anniversary would be one joy and not a lot of sorrow. 

Question and Answer:
haiti_q_a haiti_q_a2

Q: 1. Peace Action - Paulie Cantwell:
 I was concerned bat the military that is there at the NGP conference on climate change, I gave a speech on weapon and create event and coming and acting as rescuers. What military is there? I know US military is there. Have they been involved in rapes, we have the oil, resources.. people don't matter, that could be a reason we are not rebuilding the country for the people.
A: David - US involving the rape. NO..Broader question about military involvement in humanitarian response, in a country like Haiti, where there was this massive national disaster which needed huge international attention, some were involved, like US, they are on the ground, they did good work in terms of getting, organizing and it does not take significant organization.
Certainly, we worked hard to overcome challenge. Ourselves WFP in their capacity deployed people to ensure better coordination with the military. Certainly happened but it could have happened quickly and better coordination. But we did take care eventually.
We ensure that military indeed a huge sources and these r employed as effectively as possible.
A: Denise - In Pakistan NATO era, of course we worked separately from African union groups, there is a complex humanitarian operations. In Haiti it is true that couple of weeks of earthquake, nothing overwhelming happened, but there was concern, started to rescue 2 million people, we were almost exclusively distributing to women, we worked with civil rights officers and developed communications plans for getting out the message to women and they were there to assist. We had a huge operation and we need logistic and operations support.
Q:2. Ana Zastra - I was wondering if some of the other speakers could speak about sexual violence and your organization, NGOs familiar with, because it appears that the situation is fully not being coved red even by UN, to make it light, measures being taken to protect women.
A: Bruno - In the UN it is very much recognized that this is a major issue, we are not hiding from the fact that it is a growing problem, we closely with the police to ensure that the no. of patrols are increasing n things like that. With some successes as we have seen in it is far from reaching. We are fully aware that there is much more to be done..
A: David - As Bruno said it is addressed, most recent info we have is Haitian police are in the camp, 236,000 camp residents benefitting from the brigade in protection of minors in 102 camp locations. Clearly it can be done.

About the Panelists of the “Disaster Relief and Preparedness: Haiti, A Year Later” Briefing:
Mr. David Carden, is currently acting chief of the Americans and the Caribbean, Central Asia, Europe and the Middle East (ACAEME) Section of the UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) as well as Chief of OCHA’s Early Warning and Contingency Planning Section. He has served with the UN in various capacities since 1993 in Cambodia, South Africa, Sierra Leone, Balkans, Georgia, Lebanon and New York. He spent one month in Haiti during November/December 2010.
haiti_blemarquis_asc21.jpg Mr. Bruno Lemarquis, is currently the head of the Policy and Planning Division of UNDP’s Bureau for Crisis Prevention and Recovery (BCPR), based in New York. A French national, Mr. Lemarquis holds a degree as an “Ingenieur en Agriculture des Regions Chaudes” from the Centre National d’Etudes des Regions Chaudes in Montpellier, France. He has worked for UNDP since 1992, and has always been associated with issues related to crisis prevention and recovery. He has worked in the field for UNDP in Cambodia (1992-1996), the Palestinian Territories (1996-1998), Haiti (1998-2002), and Somalia, where has was Country Director for UNDP from 2006-2009. He also served at Headquarters in NY from 2002 to 2006 as senior advisor for crisis countries in the Arab States region. Prior to joining UNDP he has also worked for NGOs in Haiti, Ethiopia and Cambodia (1986-1991). Mr. Lemarquis was deployed to Haiti in the immediate aftermath of the earthquake as part of UNDP’s surge support.
denise_brown Ms. Denise Brown, is currently the New York based Senior Donor Relations Officer under the Government Donor Relations Division of the UN World Food Programme (WFP). A Canadian national, Ms. Brown holds a Masters of Science from Purdue University and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of British Columbia. Her current portfolio focuses on overall strategies and policies with regard to UN common funding, particularly within the humanitarian sphere, funding structures and funding in post-conflict/transition situations. Before joining the WFP, Ms. Brown worked in Haiti for PACT International and the UN Office for Project Services from 1994 to 1998. She was based in Cambodia from 1992 to 1994 with Enfants du Cambodge, and in Iraq as a field monitor for the WFP in 1998. From 1999 to 2002, Ms. Brown served as a Programme Officer on the Afghanistan operation, as the Emergency Coordinator for WFP Kenya during the drought in the Horn of Africa between 2006 and 2007, and Head of the Refugee Operation in Kenya from 2002 through 2006. She was Deputy Country Director for Somalia from 2007 through 2009. Ms. Brown has also served as a member of the operations team deployed to Haiti immediately following the earthquake in January of 2010 and was also deployed to Pakistan following the floods in August 2010.
haiti_tbaime3_asc12.jpg Ms. Tania Bien-Aime, is the Executive Director of Equality Now, an international human rights organization that works for the protection of the rights of women and girls. Founded in 1992, issues of concern to Equality Now include discrimination in law, sexual violence, and trafficking and female genital mutilation. Ms. Bien-Aime holds a law degree from NYU School of Law and a Licence in Political Science from the University if Geneva/Graduate School of International Studies, Switzerland. Before attending law school, she was a Program Officer at the African American Institute. Prior to joining Equality Now in 2000 as General Counsel, she was Director of Business Affairs/Film Acquisitions at HBO from 1996 to 2000, and practiced international corporate law at the Wall Street law firm, Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen and Hamilton, from 1992-1996. For close to two decades, Ms. Bien-Aime has provided expert commentary on women’s rights on numerous national and international media outlets, including in the New York Times, AP, Reuters, CNN, NPR, and The Amanpour Show. Ms. Bien-Aime is a contributor to The Huffington Post, and has published legal articles and essays, including in “Becoming Myself: Reflections on Growing Up Female,” edited by Willa Shalit (Hyperion, 2006).

* Cevat CIVAN is also Treasurer of the IUMEZUSA.

- More on the UN/DPI-NGO Briefings on the Lightmillennium.Org

-Join The Light Millennium with $1 as member and partner campaign through NYCharities.Org.

LIGHTMILLENNIUM.ORG, Issue#25, Winter 2011....
EVERYTHING SHOULD BE UNDER THE SUN: YES to the Global Peace Movement, YES to Loving & Caring Each Other, YES to Greatness in Humanity, YES to Saving Our Unique Mother Earth, YES to Great Dreams For Better Tomorrows, YES to Emerging Positive Global Energy, YES to National and Global Transparency, and YES to Lighting Our Souls & Minds.
We have only one WORLD yet! If we destroy it, where else will we go? NO to New Nuclear Weapons - NO to Star Wars - NO to New Nuclear Targets...NO to Weapons In Space -
NO to New Pretexts For Nuclear War - NO to Nuclear Testing - NO to All Types Of Weapons & War & War Culture...

This e-platform is under the umbrella of The Light Millennium, which is A Charitable, Under 501 (c) (3) Status, Not-For-Profit organization based in New York. Introduced in August 1999; Established in January 2000; and Founded by Bircan Ünver on July 17, 2001, and associated with the Department of Public Information of the United Nations effective on December 12, 2005.

This site is copyright© 1999-2011 trademarks ™ of their respective owners & Lightmillennium.Org. The contents of this site may not be reproduced in whole or part without the expressed or written permission of creators. All material contained here in is protected under all applicable international copyright laws. All rights reserved. Created, developed and designed by Bircan Ünver ©2011,The Light Millennium - Lightmillennium.Org, 11th Anniversary with the first multi-participatory e-publication and LMTV Programs since January 2000. 2011, New York.


This site is copyright© 1999-2000-2001-2002-2003-2004-2005-2006-2007-2008-2009 & 2010 trademarks ™ of