Hurricane Rebuilding Effort for Au Centre, HAITI

For: Haiti Community Support, Inc.
Organizer: Haiti Community Support, Inc.
Hurricane Rebuilding Effort for Au Centre, HAITI (Haiti Community Support, Inc.)
of $40,000 goal
68% Complete
Raised by 20 donors

The Story

On October 4th, Hurricane Matthew made a devastating blow to Haiti’s south as a category 4 storm. In the aftermath of the storm the island is reeling from contaminated water, food shortages, displaced residents, and destroyed infrastructure. Worst hit are the mountain villages where the winds were the strongest, and the housing structures the weakest.

Over the past ten years, Haiti Community Support (HCS) has been working in Au Centre, in the Macaya Mountains in Southern Haiti, a farming region of shade trees over small coffee plantations, and one of the world’s poorest places. Due to the remote nature of Au Centre, the region is last on the list for help during disasters.

The situation in the village right now is dire. Every home lost the roof, most have collapsed wells. Food stores are ruined and crops are destroyed. The village is now sheltering in the Haiti Community Support (HCS) school house, and hunger is a big problem. We are on the ground addressing matters, and your donation will help save lives and relieve suffering right now when it’s most needed.

Our first goal is to raise $40,000 in the next 4 weeks to purchase and transport food, seeds, medical and construction supplies to Au Centre for urgent care and reconstruction needs.  

HCS is a small charity, directly serving neglected remote communities -  small enough to get things done even in the midst of chaos. A network of team members are already transporting emergency food to the village – weeks ahead of larger organizations who are bogged down with the crisis in the large cities at the base of the mountains.

Please consider making a contribution to help our friends, families and neighbors in Au Centre through this incredibly difficult time, as they try to piece their village back together again.

Please follow along and share our updates about the conditions and progress of our friends and family in Au Centre.

Please keep the children, women and men of Haiti in your thoughts and prayers.

With all of the various charities in Haiti asking for support, why Haiti Community Support?

Haiti Community Support (HCS) offers a unique approach to community development. We’re helping remote mountain areas where no other organization or government ever went to help. Our support funds go directly into the village to a proven team of community members who know what their village needs and how to get things done.

Haiti Community Support is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that raises funds to deliver education, nutrition and health care services to children and villagers living in the remote mountainous region of Au Centre, Haiti.

In the last ten years, Haiti Community Support (HCS) has helped build and run Au Centre's first school (of 225 students), children's hot lunch program, medical clinic and potable water system.

HCS is run by volunteer board members based in the US, and one paid administrator position based in Haiti who manages the HCS programs and partnerships, as well as the acquisition and distribution of supplies to the villages in Au Centre. 

HCS specializes in working in inaccessible rural areas of Haiti where other groups don't go. Our mobile medical clinics served over 10,000 people after the 2010 earthquake.

We believe that the solution to Haiti's worst problems lies in empowering Haitians themselves. By believing in what Haitians can accomplish, we are a partner, not a patron. We are a neighbor, not an outsider.

Fundraiser Updates

Posted on December 2, 2016

Posted on December 2, 2016

News from Au Centre, Haiti

Hurricane Matthew - Update No 5

From:  Mathilde Aurelien Wilson

We’re doing it!  This fundraising drive allowed us to set up multiple lines of support to the village.  Conditions remain extremely difficult and our support is helping a lot of people at a really bad time.  Here’s what’s happening:  

Food:  We are getting a steady flow of food to the village; bags of rice to the communal kitchen and last week 50 families got a 5 gallon bucket filled with rice, beans, oil and canned sardines to help set up their household kitchens. More family packages and bulk rice continue to the village weekly. While the UN and other large aid groups are getting trucks through the mountains to the big population centers on the North Shore, the Washington Post reports:  “small towns on the way to Jeremie are starving and resentful to see many aid convoys pass them by.”  Validation of Haiti Community Support’s 'small-is-beautiful' model is that Au Centre is getting direct targeted support from the Haiti Community Support (HCS) team in Haiti.  

Medical Help: The medical team just ran its second clinic.  Mud slides, horrendous road conditions, and a long walk uphill to the school house have not stopped them!  Nearly 100 people took the line for last week’s clinic (held in the school house till repairs are done to the health center) The team’s gravest concern is pervasive child malnutrition.  Medical staff are treating children for malaria, scabies, typhoid, gastric and diarrheal issues. Adults have these, plus elevated blood pressure.

Crop Assistance: The UN Reports “crop loss reaching a staggering 80 to 100 per cent…food insecurity risks worsening in the coming months if farming activities are not urgently restored by mid November.”  Working with fellow agronomists, our HCS Director has miraculously sourced and readied for delivery this week of two truckloads of yam and banana starts.  

Housing:  Many families will be living in the school house for some time.  While making quick repairs to their homes, few have the funds to actually rebuild.  I’m urgently looking for an organization to fund house rebuilding as a second phase to our relief program.

UN Situation Report for November 14 stated there “remains an enormous gap in the people’s ability to meet their basic, day-to-day necessities, such as medication, food, water, hygiene, and the ability to reconstruct their destroyed homes.” Against daunting and dangerous logistical challenges the resourceful and brave HCS team is reaching the village to continue the emergency work.

Thank you all so much. Including the rebuilding part, the team needs support for months to come.  Please can you keep helping us in any way you can - help by spreading the word so others may join and with any donations you can make to this major effort.

Love from Mathilde Aurelien-Wilson

Posted on October 25, 2016

Posted on October 25, 2016

* A Message from Mathilde....

Dear Friends,

The Situation in Au Centre is dire.There is no other way to say it:  Au Centre, Haiti, my birth village, has been demolished. We just received our first photos from the villages and uploaded them to the gallery. The photos show such devastation and suffering that my head is spinning. My mother's house was one of the stronger houses and it is down like pretty much the rest of the town. People perished in the storm, food stores are lost as well as all the food crops and seed supplies. Coffee trees are all down as are many of the beautiful shade trees they depend on. People are living in the school house - we built it strong enough!

For the last 11 years, from time to time, we've sent you information about Haiti Community Support's projects in the isolated rural villages in Haiti's Southern mountains. Usually it was good news about building and running the HCS supported elementary school, getting safe water closer to the village, providing hot lunches and medical care for students and villagers. Many of you chipped in to run HCS's mobile clinics that treated thousands of people after Haiti's 2010 earthquake. 

What Haiti Needs Right Now:  Within a day of Hurricane Matthew hitting the village, HCS supporters started sending in donations to get food and medicine up to the village. Combining that with what we had in our HCS accounts, I started sending bank wires to our HCS director in Port au Prince.  Myriam Valme Joseph right away started buying and shipping food supplies to the village. She's assembled a seasoned expeditionary medical team who is ready to hit the road as soon as landslides are cleared.   

My goal is to keep the emergency aid flowing while we plan and assist in the rebuilding work. There's no other group but HCS to help families in this part of Haiti.   

It's going to take resources. I hope if you are reading this appeal, that you can help us support these hard-working farm families get their lives back together. 

Can you please help us keep the support flowing? 

Thank you,



Working Together to Rebuild

The citizens of Au Centre are used to making things happen through group cooperation. It only took some financial help for the villagers to raise up the 4,000 sq ft Renaissance Elementary School in the middle of a bean field.  Villagers made the blocks and poured the roof using large labor squads equal part men and women to mine the sand and gravel and carry it to the building site. HCS funding also supported large teams to hand-build the first jeep trail to the village, to rebuild the medical clinic building, and to dig a 2 mile trench to carry water to the village.  With financial help this village makes miracles happen! 

Posted on October 18, 2016

Posted on October 18, 2016

* 2nd UPDATE from Au Centre, HAITI.....

Thank you to our dear friends who have responded so promptly to our call for support. Your financial contributions are making a difference and helping in a huge way... Shipments brought in through Haiti Community Support's network continue to the village. The financial support received through this campaign has immediately been put to use to purchase supplies for Au Centre. We are sending 100lb sacks of rice and the food is brought up the mountain roads by villagers using whatever transport they can find. La Renaissance Elementary School's mule carries the load for the last 5 miles by foot path. When the goods arrive to the village, they are stored in the La Renaissance Elementary School's pantry.  (*La Renaissance School is a 4,000 sq. ft. concrete building that has been the only large-scale construction project in the history of Au Centre, and was built 8 years ago by the villagers themselves, with funds from Haiti Community Support. The school is one of the only 2 remaining structures in tact after Hurricane Matthew and is serving as the primary shelter and resource for the villagers.) 

Haiti Community Support has organized a team of cooks to prepare free community meals using big caldrons on 3 large fires.  Communal cooking is the most efficient way to get food to people. After working on rebuilding their homes during the day, villagers return to the school house in the late afternoon for a hot meal and to sleep.  
Our director in Port au Prince, Myriam Valme Joseph, has organized a medical team to travel to the village 19 October.  She is purchasing the medicine and more food now. It will be shipped by truck to Camp Perrin. The team consists of a doctor and nurse who've been to the village before and are used to treating people in difficult conditions. 

We will keep you updated as we receive news back from Au Centre. Please continue to share our story and reach out to your friends and neighbors and spread the word that there is a lot that we can do together to help our brothers and sisters in Haiti. It's all about PARTNERSHIP, and we are so thankful for your pledge of support.  Many blessings.

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