Haiti - Storms Fact Sheet #4, Fiscal Year (FY) 2009


Note: The last fact sheet was dated October 21, 2008.


- During the week of October 20, the USAID Disaster Assistance Response Team (USAID/DART) leader and two USAID engineers traveled to the site of the submerged bridge at Miragoane Lake in Nippes Department to assess conditions in the area surrounding the flooded bridge, as well as the bypass currently under construction.

-  During the week of October 27, the USAID/DART leader and USAID engineers traveled to the site of the damaged Ennery Bridge in Artibonite Department to conduct a preliminary assessment. USAID/OFDA plans to fund the construction of a temporary low-water crossing at Ennery Bridge. USAID/Haiti plans to fund the construction of a permanent bridge at the location. USAID/DART staff and engineers have indicated that a six-mile section of the road from Gonaïves to Ennery is in poor condition and urgently requires maintenance and reconstruction.

-  On October 22, a USAID/DART representative attended an American Red Cross (AmRC) distribution in Gonaïves. As of October 31, the AmRC Relief Emergency Response Unit had completed field assessments and distributed relief supplies to nearly 10,000 families, including 100 mosquito nets, 1,250 kitchen sets, 1,820 water containers, and 2,000 hygiene kits that were provided with USAID/OFDA funds, benefiting an estimated 3,000 households.

Total Affected Population
OCHA - October 8, 2008
GOH(1)- October 6, 2008
GOH - October 6, 2008
IDPs (2)
GOH - September 10, 2008
IDPs Currently in Shelters
35,000 - 40,000
IOM(3) - October 16, 2008
Other Damage 22,702 houses destroyed,
84,625 houses damaged
GOH - October 1, 2008


USAID/OFDA Assistance(4): $10,060,194
USAID/FFP(5) Assistance(6): $14,000,000
USAID/Haiti Assistance: $5,000,000
DOD(7) Assistance : $2,631,877
DHS(8) Assistance(9): Amount Forthcoming
Total USG Humanitarian Assistance to Haiti for Hurricanes in Calendar Year 2008: $31,692,071


- On October 30, the USAID-funded Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET) reported that food security in Haiti had deteriorated significantly following the storms. Approximately 3 million people are currently food insecure countrywide, including an estimated 800,000 storm-affected individuals, according to the GOH Coordination Nationale de la Sécurité Alimentaire and FEWS NET.

- On October 23 and 24, the U.N. Humanitarian Coordinator (HC) traveled to Haiti to assess current response efforts and identify ongoing humanitarian needs. According to the U.N. HC, priority humanitarian needs include food and water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) programs, as well as additional shelters for displaced populations that currently reside in school facilities. In addition, the U.N. HC noted a need for disaster risk reduction programs in Haiti, including a countrywide early warning system, watershed management programs, reinforcement of river banks, and reforestation in areas particularly susceptible to landslides and flooding.

- According to the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), an estimated 10,000 individuals in Gonaïves are participating in a cash-for-work cleanup program managed by the GOH that began on October 23. This brings the total number of individuals employed by cash-for-work programs in Gonaïves to approximately 25,000 people.

- According to OCHA, the GOH plans to reopen schools in Gonaïves by November 10. OCHA reports that partners are continuing to investigate longer-term shelter options for IDPs located in temporary shelters who are still unable to return home.


- According to OCHA, the road between Marigot and Belle Anse in Southeast Department remains impassable. Vehicles have successfully passed through Anse a Veau on the northern coast of Nippes Department, although access remains challenging due to road damage. In South Department, OCHA reports that the road between Tiburon and Les Anglais remains impassable.

- On October 24, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) announced a $25 million grant to improve the road network and road maintenance in Grand Anse, Nippes, and South departments, where numerous towns and villages are difficult to reach by overland transportation.

- According to OCHA, the Norwegian Red Cross pledged 46 trucks to the U.N. World Food Program (WFP) to increase WFP transport capacity in the country. As of October 28, approximately 23 of the trucks had arrived in Port au Prince and the remainder were scheduled to arrive in the coming days.

Agriculture and Food Security

- On October 30, FEWS NET reported that populations in Haiti experiencing food insecurity increased by 20 percent during the month of September. Prior to the storms, FEWS NET identified food insecure populations in semi-arid areas in Northwest, Northeast, and Grande Anse departments and in Gonâve Island, West Department. As of October 30, FEWS NET had identified additional food insecure populations in rural and coastal villages in South, Southeast, Nippes, and Artibonite departments.

- According to preliminary estimates by the GOH Ministry of Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Rural Development (MARNDR), the storms resulted in an estimated $61 million in agricultural damage countrywide, resulting in reduced food production and negatively affecting short-term food availability for flood-affected populations. FEWS NET indicated that reduced food production is expected to result in increased dependence on commercial and non-commercial food imports among affected individuals.

- According to the MARNDR, the storms resulted in the loss of an estimated 3 percent of livestock countrywide, representing approximately 100,000 livestock.

- From October 8 to 9, a technical team led by the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) traveled to Gonaïves and Gros Morne, in Artibonite Department and Plaisance, in North Department. In Gonaïves, FAO distributed 175 kg of vegetable seeds to approximately 1,750 rural families and an estimated 2 metric tons (MT) of bean seeds to farmers in the rural areas of Bayonnais, Dubédou, La Branle, and Mangnan Basin.

Emergency Food Assistance

- As of October 22, WFP reported that donors had contributed approximately one third of the U.N. Flash Appeal's $33 million for emergency food assistance for an estimated 800,000 targeted beneficiaries over a six-month period. To date, USAID/FFP has provided approximately $14 million to WFP for emergency food assistance.

- As of October 27, WFP had distributed approximately 5,804 MT of emergency food aid to more than 572,000 beneficiaries, including nearly 266,700 individuals in Gonaïves.

- Following a rapid family census exercise conducted by WFP, the GOH Civil Protection Directorate, and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), WFP issued new ration cards to more than 69,600 families in Gonaïves to identify beneficiaries for future food distributions. On October 28, WFP and CARE distributed approximately 103 MT of food commodities to an estimated 17,250 beneficiaries in the community of Trou Couleuvre.

- As of October 25, WFP, in coordination with the GOH Coordination Régionale des Organisations du Sud-Est, had assisted new beneficiaries in Southeast Department, including an estimated 6,000 beneficiaries in the communities of La Montagne and Marbial. WFP also continues to provide air transport for emergency food distributions in areas inaccessible by road, including Ile de la Tortue, in Northwest Department.


- OCHA reported that from October 9 to October 22, the estimated number of families in shelters in Gonaïves had decreased from 6,619 to 3,393. However, OCHA also noted that the IDP population at several shelters had increased in recent weeks due to displaced families relocating from private schools to public schools used as shelters.  

- On October 25 and 26, Gonaïves shelter cluster members conducted an assessment of schools currently utilized as shelters to determine humanitarian needs of IDPs relocating in the coming weeks. Results of the assessment are scheduled to be released the first week of November, according to OCHA.

- According to OCHA, recent rapid shelter assessment figures indicate that the majority of IDPs departing shelters are returning home or relocating to host communities.  OCHA noted the need for the documentation of IDPs located in host communities as well as provision of shelter kits to returning IDPs populations. In the coming days, IOM and the French Red Cross are scheduled to distribute an estimated 3,500 shelter repair kits to displaced families preparing to return to areas of origin.

Map: USG Humanitarian Assistance to Haiti (as of 31 Oct 2008)