Hurricane Tomas Swipes Haiti – Pray for Limited Impact

Please pray for the people of Haiti today, especially for hundreds of thousands displaced by the earthquake in January and still living in tents in Port-au-Prince and surrounding areas.

We are watching the situation very closely, particularly with concerns over flooding in the tent cities, potential of mudslides on the hillside slums, and spreading of cholera and other diseases during this new crisis.

People living under tarps and in tents are being encouraged to seek shelter from the storm, but several realities make this difficult for most. From a NY Times article this morning:

President René Préval made it plain that people were largely on their own, warning them on local radio Thursday, “You have to help yourself.” He encouraged people in the camps to stay with friends or relatives.

But Claudette Pierre, a resident of a camp in Port-au-Prince, had an answer that spoke for many.

“The friends I had to go to died in the earthquake,” Ms. Pierre said. She also lost her husband and a 9-year-old son and now shares a tent with her surviving four children, who sleep on the ground, and another family of five, who share a queen-size bed.

“Although the cholera outbreak has largely been contained to regions north of Port-au-Prince… Tomas could set back our efforts to contain the outbreak in the camps, as heavy rains cause pooling water that can increase spread of the disease,” the American Red Cross said.

Here are some recent news stories:

We know that our God can calm this storm, or redirect it to minimize the impact on the vulnerable population centers of Haiti.