BY JOSANDY JEUNE & STEFANY FOLEY
Without a doubt, Hurricane Matthew has taken a toll on Haiti and has affected the lives of not only the people there, but here as well. Hurricane Matthew is a category five hurricane which has absolutely devastated Haiti, and hit southern parts of the United States. Haiti is a Caribbean country with a population of 10.32 million people (in 2013).
Haiti is in crisis due to the hurricane that just hit on September 28, 2016. This hurricane has destroyed a number of towns and in a matter of a week leaving people without food and a home. The death toll has now risen to about 1,000 people in Haiti.
A lot of students aren't aware about what is going on, but there are some that do. Freshman Tyler Crispin being one of them. Crispin finds what has happened to be “very devastating and really emotional.” Crispin feels nothing but sympathy toward the citizens of Haiti.
Crispin doesn’t know anyone personally that has been affected by the hurricane but he and his church have been actively praying for the population of Haiti. Crispin states that he “[hasn’t] done much money wise, but [has] been praying with [his] friends everyday.”
Gaelle Wagnac was going away on vacation when the hurricane hit Haiti. She was visiting her grandma in Chardonière which is in the southern part of Haiti. Wagnac’s family and friends were affected by the hurricane, a lot of their stuff was demolished. Thankfully, no one got hurt. “The hurricane hit [our] house really badly” Wagnac states. Where they stayed the roof came off, they lost one of the walls, and the door fell off from the house. They lost a lot of material.
Wagnac believes to help the country you can send goods that the community needs such as clean water, food, materials, etc. She believes “money really isn't the issue right now, and when they do send money over it isn’t getting to the right people”.
Matthew has clearly affected many lives in Haiti and here in America as well. This is causing people to want to come together and help everyone that has been affected in one way or another. Many companies, communities and individuals have started online funds or fundraisers.
Paul Degenkolb who is the French teacher at Malden High School has been actively raising supplies and awareness on what is going on. He and the students participating in the Haitian Club are collecting supplies to help support a remote community in Haiti called Matenwa. Since last year before the hurricane occurred the Haitian Club has been collecting supplies to ship over there.
The event takes place on Saturday, October 29th 2016 and they will be collecting items till 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Cash donations are recommended as well because they do need money so they can ship the supplies over there. They will be putting the supplies in big domes that resemble shipping carts and will get them shipped to Matenwa as soon as possible. Others adults involved is James Eliscar the French teacher and lots of Malden High alums that have contacted Degenkolb via email and wanted to help out.
Degenkolb thinks that the hurricane has affected this community in the sense that lots of haitian students and families in Malden and at Malden High School know people that are from Haiti dealing with the aftermath of the hurricane.
All in all, the hurricane has left the people of Haiti with a lot on their plate, and it’s up to communities and people to help out.