ACF Aid Reaches Thousands of Earthquake Survivors in Haiti

Humanitarian organization rushes to provide access to food, water, & sanitation in stricken areas
ACF supplies clean drinking water to displaced families in Port-au-Prince, courtesy L. Grosjean

PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI—Three weeks after the 7.0-magnitude earthquake struck parts of western Haiti, Action Against Hunger | ACF-International is providing displaced families with access to food, water, and sanitation in hard-hit neighborhoods of Port-au-Prince and surrounding areas. In spite of gasoline shortages, airport delays, and other logistical limitations, the international humanitarian organization has assisted thousands of people left homeless and in dire need of life-sustaining supplies.

Safe Drinking Water, Hygiene, & Sanitation

In the immediate aftermath of the earthquake, Action Against Hunger mobilized to control outbreaks of disease by distributing clean water and implementing emergency sanitation and hygiene programs. The organization has installed 32 large water reservoirs in makeshift camps for the displaced across Port-au-Prince, which provide 64,000 people with daily access to safe drinking water. These “bladder tanks” are filled with clean water transported from outside the city.

As sanitation and hygiene remains an urgent priority, ACF has constructed latrine facilities in camps in Gressier and Sainte-Marie, Port-au-Prince, and launched public awareness campaigns in these areas to encourage best practices in emergency settings. In zones where trench digging is not feasible, the organization is rushing to install makeshift latrines on raised platforms.

Targeted Food Distributions

As the risk of acute malnutrition grows in Haiti, ACF is distributing high-protein biscuits to families with children under five, who are most vulnerable to the life-threatening condition. The agency has handed out 26 tons of vitamin-laden BP5 biscuits to over 13,000 people, who were identified by neighborhood committees established in the camps. By involving communities in the decision-making process, ACF is working to ensure efficient and safe distributions that meet international humanitarian standards.

In cooperation with the World Food Program, Oxfam, and the National Food Security Coordination Unit, Action Against Hunger is also carrying out a rapid food assessment in affected areas to determine immediate and longer-term needs of the population.

More Supplies Arriving

A cargo plane carrying emergency supplies landed in Santo Domingo on Friday to reinforce ACF’s emergency relief efforts. This chartered flight, the organization’s fourth since the quake, carried additional emergency food, and water and sanitation supplies, including 4,200 sheets, 14,000 blankets, 30 tons of BP5 biscuits, and water taps, and additional bladder tanks. Five ACF vehicles are currently en-route from the Dominican Republic to Haiti.

Action Against Hunger has implemented programs in Haiti since 1985, carrying out emergency measures in the areas of health and nutrition. Since 2001, ACF has focused primarily on food security and water, sanitation, and hygiene programs in both emergency and development contexts in Port de Paix, Gonaives, Anse Rouge and Jeremiah.