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Haiti: The response to the threat of cholera

Published on Monday 10 October 2016

In Port-au-Prince, the whole city is buzzing. All SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL’s teams are getting organised to manage the crisis in the best way after hurricane Matthew.

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In SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL’s warehouse in Port-au-Prince, Emergency water, sanitation and hygiene supervisor Pierre Desvillettes is preparing material ready to deploy in the field. In this stock, water distribution devices and 66 taps will allow 200 people to drink safe water.

Nearby, flexible tanks called bladders. From 2 to 15 cubic metres, the ten bladders amount to a total capacity of 51 cubic metres! While waiting for the equipment from Paris, these tanks will help store safe water to allow hurricane-affected populations in Les Nippes to use drinkable water and to avoid diseases.

Information coming in gradually

Today, it is hard to tell how many people could be supplied, Pierre Desvillettes explains. If we think that hundreds of people could benefit from our infrastructures, it would depend on the assessments we have to do before the beginning of our activities. We will know the water flow, and where we could draw it from. Should we connect to a network, or should we collect it from a well or a spring? All these questions will find their answers in the coming days, according to the feedback of our teams, which are making assessments in the field at the moment”.

Providing safe water is also allowing populations to store it, and to keep the diseases away. That requires providing jerry cans. They are also ready to be sent. The cholera team in Port-au-Prince is getting ready to make assessments and disinfect households affected by cholera. We fear an outbreak, because of the destruction of almost all the water networks.

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  • 10.5 million inhabitants
  • 58.6% poverty rate
  • 168th out of 188 on the Human Development Index
  • 530,077 people helped