In 2008, my colleague and I founded EarthSpark International, a nonprofit, to assist in providing clean energy products to Haiti’s rural population. In this instance, EarthSpark’s objective is to provide solar lamps and solar home systems that help wean the population away from inefficient and polluting energy, such as kerosene and charcoal, that not only escalate Haiti’s ubiquitous pollution, but that also spur a host of assorted health ailments.
At 4:53 PM, on Jan. 12, 2010, this highly vulnerable island nation experienced a major earthquake that registered 7.0 on the Richter scale, with its epicenter a mere 10 miles west of Port-Au-Prince, Haiti’s densely populated capital. This earthquake wrought incredibly large numbers of causalities, which currently have an estimated count of 150,000 and offer every prospect for growing ever higher as rescue teams excavate bodies from almost unfathomable piles of rubble. Haiti-never a model for efficient urban planning-was utterly devastated beyond belief by this natural disaster. The largest humanitarian disaster in Haiti’s history is now underway.
Immediately after the earthquake demolished Port-au-Prince, EarthSpark began to reach out to its partner organizations, such as Partners in Health and the Clinton Global Initiative , to funnel aid to the devastated areas. EarthSpark International has already secured donor commitments to send more than 6,500 lamps and 800 mobile phone chargers to buttress the courageous efforts of the first responders in their search and rescue operations, and to light and power various field hospitals.
To read more about EarthSpark’s efforts to assist Haiti, see:
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