Around the World

Let’s help the Philippines better than Haiti

604Regrettably, this is not the first natural disaster in modern times, nor will it be the last, and there is much that we can learn from the way that humanitarian and reconstruction efforts were organised in the days, weeks, and months following previous mega-disasters such as the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami and the 2010 earthquake in Haiti.

We should not help the Philippines like we helped Haiti – we can, and must, help better. Lack of generosity is not the problem. Since the Haitian earthquake, almost $6 billion has been disbursed in official aid, in a country with a population of just under 10 million. On top of that, an estimated $3 billion has been donated to NGOs in private contributions. The United States pledged more than $3 billion for relief and reconstruction.

Yet almost four years after the quake, there is little to show for this: even the capital Port-au-Prince still does not have decent roads, running water, or reliable electricity. An estimated 200,000 to 400,000 Haitians still live in the tents provided by relief agencies soon after the quake. via better than Haiti


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