The rainy season in Haiti begins in April and extends through the summer. Once the rain begins, water carrying cholera will quickly spread and contaminate the water sources used by children, youth, and adults living throughout Haiti, including the crowded slums of Port au Prince.
What is cholera?
Cholera is a bacterial infection transmitted by drinking water or eating food that has been contaminated by the feces of an infected person. Many Haitians do not have access to modern toilets or working sewers and septic tanks, which helps explain how the infection has quickly become what NPR News recently called “the worst ongoing episode in the world.”
The effects of cholera include intestinal pain, severe diarrhea, vomiting and in some cases death by dehydration. In most cases, cholera is treatable by rehydration solutions, but intravenous (IV) fluids or antibiotics may also be needed.
There have been over 500,000 cases of cholera in Haiti since 2010 (post-earthquake) and at least 7000 people have died. There were no known cases of Cholera in Haiti before the earthquake.
Safe Water for Haiti is an effort to provide solutions to prevent the spread of cholera. We will do this by purchasing and distributing “Aqua-Tabs” – small tablets used to decontaminate water, making it safe for use – in Port au Prince, where we have already begun distributing free Aqua-Tabs at several clinics.
The overall goal of this project is to provide safe water to as many people in Haiti as possible, especially during the first six weeks of the rainy season, which we believe to be a very critical time to prevent the spread of cholera. Although it’s difficult to determine the exact costs, for instance, the numbers below are approximations to the best of our understanding, but we feel confident we can meet our goal of providing safe water for thousands of people for at least six weeks by raising $6000. UPDATE (5/16/12): we have raised nearly $8,000. Update (5/22/12): we purchased 130,000 Aquatabs today and they are on their way to three different locations for distribution! Those tabs have the ability to purify over 300,000 gallons of water. Thank you so much for your support! Your donations have made this possible!
You can help prevent the spread of cholera in Haiti through your donation to Haiti Mission Project:
$10 will provide safe water for 300 people for a day
$25 will provide safe water for 750 people for a day
$100 will provide safe water for 3000 people for a day
Clicking the “Donate” button below will take you to a secure page operated by Paypal.
100% of your tax-deductible donation will purchase Aqua-Tabs for immediate free distribution through our partner medical clinic in Port au Prince.