- Title: 'I don't know what we'll do': Haiti quake survivors fear for children's future
- Date: 23rd August 2021
- Summary: CAMP PERRIN, HAITI (AUGUST 22, 2021) (REUTERS) FACE OF BABY, LOVE SHAISKA ALEXANDRE MOTHER OF THE BABY, LOVELY JEAN, HOLDING BABY LITTLE GIRL LOOKING OUT FROM WINDOW JEAN'S HUSBAND, PIERRE ALEXANDRE, OUTSIDE THE FAMILY'S HOUSE VARIOUS OF JEAN BOTTLE-FEEDING BABY GENERAL OF FAMILY OUTSIDE HOUSE ALEXANDRE WALKING INTO THE HOUSE CAN OF BABY FORMULA ON SHELF CLOTHES ON BED, WHERE THE WHOLE FAMILY SLEEP (SOUNDBITE) (Creole) 30-YEAR-OLD FATHER OF LOVE SHAISKA ALEXANDRE, PIERRE ALEXANDRE, SAYING: "My baby was in the neonatology area with the nurses and doctors. There were around 10 babies there and I was somewhere else, talking to my wife when we felt the earthquake. She wanted to run but I said: 'No, we have to protect ourselves under the bed.' Unfortunately, the bed was too low so we couldn't protect ourselves there. The doors were closed because they were cleaning the area. We were unable to leave, we could not go out, and when it was over they opened the door and we ran away. We quickly went to the neonatology area, took our baby with us, and went outside." LES CAYES, HAITI (RECENT - AUGUST 17, 2021) (REUTERS) PATIENTS IN HOSPITAL WOMAN FANNING CHILD WITH MATERIAL GIRL WITH BANDAGED HEAD WOMAN HOLDING BOY WITH BANDAGED HEAD INJURED BOY LOOKING INTO CAMERA CAMP-PERRIN, HAITI (AUGUST 22, 2021) (REUTERS) (SOUNDBITE) (Creole) 24-YEAR-OLD MOTHER OF LOVE SHAISKA ALEXANDRE, LOVELY JEAN, SAYING: "Right after the earthquake, I ran away from the hospital... and I told the father to get the baby out of the hospital. It was awful. I was crying like a baby. I experienced this in Port-au-Prince. It was awful.'' VARIOUS OF ALEXANDRE WALKING TO HIS HOME CHILD SITTING IN FRONT OF WATER BOWL EXTERIOR OF FAMILY'S HOUSE FAMILY SITTING ON FRONT PORCH MOTHER AND BABY (SOUNDBITE) (Creole) 30-YEAR-OLD FATHER OF LOVE SHAISKA ALEXANDRE, PIERRE ALEXANDRE, SAYING: ''I'm still thinking positively. I couldn't afford the cost of my baby's birth, but nowadays I'm trying to feed the mother so she can feed the baby, so I can afford to buy some milk for the baby, and there's a friend of mine who said I should buy medication that costs 60 HT gourde ($3.00) for the baby. She's suffering from a bellyache.'' VARIOUS OF ALEXANDRE SELLING AVOCADOS TO HELP HIS FAMILY
- Embargoed: 6th September 2021 14:17
- Keywords: Haiti baby camp earthquake family newborn parents quake
- Location: CAMP-PERRIN AND LES CAYES, HAITI
- City: CAMP-PERRIN AND LES CAYES, HAITI
- Country: Haiti
- Topics: Health/Medicine,South America / Central America,Editors' Choice
- Reuters ID: LVA001ERI4GUF
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Many survivors of the earthquake that killed more than 2,200 people in southern Haiti are growing worried about how they will provide for their children, with more than half a million minors feared to be at risk from the fallout.
The August 14 quake hammered infrastructure, destroying or damaging some 130,000 homes, cutting off roads, and pitching thousands of families in the Western Hemisphere's poorest country into an uncertain future.
When the magnitude 7.2 quake struck, homemaker Lovely Jean was resting inside the general hospital of the southern city of Les Cayes, while her three-day-old baby, Love Shaiska, was in the neonatal ward being treated for an infection.
Les Cayes was one of the areas worst hit by the quake, and as the hospital walls trembled, Jean sent her husband, Pierre Alexandre, to grab the infant while she fled the building.
"It was awful. I was crying like a baby,'' the 24-year-old said, cradling her child on the porch of their damaged home in a tiny village outside the town of Camp-Perrin, northwest of Les Cayes.
The three survived, though the hospital suffered damage that forced some of its departments, including the neonatal ward, to operate outside for days after the disaster.
But the problems are only beginning for Jean and her husband, a subsistence farmer.
Alexandre's fields were buried by landslides during the earthquake and rain unleashed by Tropical Storm Grace, which pummelled Haiti on Tuesday (August 17).
His entire potato and yuca crop were unreachable, leaving the family with barely any food to eat.
Meanwhile, Love Shaiska was struggling to suckle, forcing her parents to pull together the cash to buy formula.
More than a dozen other parents Reuters spoke to in the quake zone expressed similar concerns about how they would cope.
Over half a million children were affected by the earthquake, the U.N. children's agency UNICEF said.
The temblor claimed the lives of at least 2,207 people, injured 12,268 more, and left 344 missing, according to Haitian authorities.
The nation experienced an even more destructive earthquake in 2010, which killed tens of thousands of Haitians.
There have, however, been a few encouraging developments.
Late on Sunday (August 22), civil protection authorities said 24 people who had been reported missing, including four children, had been found and taken by helicopter to Camp-Perrin to be looked after.
Recovery efforts have been impeded by the flooding and damage to roads, feeding tensions in hard-hit areas.
In the past few days, residents have looted aid trucks in several towns across the south, stirring concerns about security.
(Production: Herbert Villarraga, Robenson Sanon, Geraldine Downer)
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