Wednesday, January 12, 2011

One Year Anniversary of Haiti Earthquake.

It’s exactly one year since the catastrophic earthquake that hit Haiti, killing between 250,000 and 300,000 people, wounding about 300,000 people and leaving over a million homeless. The 7.0-magnitude earthquake left much of Haiti's capital Port-au-Prince in ruins, destroying infrastructure and causing a humanitarian catastrophe in a country that was already considered the poorest in the Americas.

In response to the destruction in Haiti, representatives from several RSOs on campus including the African & Caribbean Students' Association, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc, Beats & Pieces, FIERCE, Puerto Rican Students Association, Minority Student Pre-Medical Association, Organization for Black Students, and Cultures in Action met immediately to form UChicago for Haiti, a coalition that has since been raising awareness and fund-raising relief efforts for Haiti.

To date over US$20,000 worth of proceeds in form of money, clothes, shoes or medical supplies have been sent to Haiti via Partners in Health, a health care outreach organization that has worked in Haiti for over 20 years, and the Red Cross through UChicago for Haiti.

Fundraising events included tabling in the Reynolds Club collecting donations big and small. Adama Wiltshire (AB 10), one of the UChicago for Haiti’s leaders was caught saying, “People underestimate the power of coins. It really adds up.” Other awareness and fundraisers include collecting medical supplies, toiletries, clothes and shoes in boxes set up throughout campus including at the nearby Citi Bank. UChicago for Haiti also raised money via hosting events such as the Beats & pieces Concert, Native Touch Fashion show, Hunger banquet, and “Indulge the Arts” featuring Haitian artists. We also had several panels and discussions including a Teach-in on Haiti hosted by OMSA, CLAS & CSRPC.

In addition to the successful college effort, the professional schools helped a lot as well. For instance, the medical center sent several surgical and post-operative care teams to Haiti. The Graduate Business Council collected and matched donations of more than $1500 from the Booth community and the alumni association website allowed donations to be done online via credit cards.

The University of Chicago’s efforts did not end after the news stopped broadcasting about Haiti’s devastation. More doctors, nurses, and volunteers continue to go to Haiti to help via the university’s Global Health Initiative. Events are still being organized by UChicago for Haiti and other groups to ensure that help continues to reach those affected in Haiti.

These events include but are certainly not limited to:

Gina Athena Ulysse: Because When God is Too Busy-Haiti, Me & The World
Monday, January 24, 2011 6:00 pm
Court Theatre
5535 S. Ellis Avenue, Chicago, IL
"How did Haiti, the enfant terrible of the Caribbean become its bȇte noir?"
In this dramatic monologue, CSRPC Artist-In-Residence Gina Athena Ulysse considers how the past occupies the present. Ulysse weaves history, personal narrative, theory and statistics in spokenword with Vodou chants to reflect on childhood memories, social (in)justice, spirituality, and the incessant de-humanization of Haitians.
The performance is followed with a talkback.
Co-sponsored by the Center for International Studies, the Center for Latin American Studies, The Center for Gender Studies, Court Theatre, the Human Rights Program, Rising in Solidarity with Ayiti (R.I.S.A.) & UChicago for Haiti. Free and open to the public.
Film Screening –
Tèt Ansanm production
With Narration by Edwidge Danticat
In collaboration with Renegade Pictures, Inc., UC Santa Barbara’s Center for Black Studies Research & UChicago for Haiti.

Until then let’s all join Rising in Solidarity with Ayiti (R. I. S. A.) and Friends to
"We Still Owe Haiti"
A Community Tribute to Resilience,
An indoor vigil in remembrance of victims, survivors, and those who love them.

One Year Anniversary of Haiti Earthquake
Wednesday, January 12th, 5:50-8:00PM
Chicago Freedom School

719 S. State street #300

Candle lighting Ceremony. Teach-in on cholera epidemic, Housing crisis, and presidential elections. Call to action for Haiti solidatiry work food, culture & more.

Free Event. All are invited.
Contact for more information.

5710 will continue to support those affected by the earthquake in Haiti, and the organizations who have dedicated themselves to relief efforts.