Parques, South Leogane, Haiti, April 2010

A high magnitude earthquake, measuring 7.2 on the Richter scale and 10 km depth struck Haiti on 12 January. The epicentre was located 9 km south-southwest of Carrefour Ouest, about 16km south-west of the capital Port-au-Prince and 18 km from Petionville. The initial earthquake was followed by several aftershocks ranging from 5.9 to 4.2 Richter. The International Federation of the Red Cross estimates that the earthquake has affected over three million people and widespread damage to the infrastructure has been reported by media. WFP’s provisional estimate is that 2 million people require food assistance.
WFP’s ongoing protracted relief and recovery operation (PRRO) “Food Assistance for Vulnerable Groups exposed to Recurrent Shocks” has an emergency preparedness and relief component which is being used to support the initial WFP response. In addition, through an IR-EMOP 86 mt of high energy biscuits (enough for 30,000 people for 7 days) are being dispatched from WFP’s hub. The distributions started on 13 January in Jacmel for around 3,000 people located in the airport. Distributions in Port-au-Prince are being implemented on 14 January with military escorts for 2,400 beneficiaries in three points in towns: Place Boyer, Villa Creole and Delmas 33, which have been identified as major areas of concentration of populations. Other areas are already identified for distributions.
WFP has prioritised orphanages and hospitals in recent days in order to ensure food is reaching the most vulnerable. At one children’s home in Port au Prince, the quake killed 56 of the 134 children. WFP is ensuring that those who survived are being fed.
A United Nations World Food Program (WFP) helicopter lands in Parques, a remote town south from Leogane, Haiti, to distribute food on April 14, 2010. About 300 families from Port-au-Prince fled in the poor village after the January 12 quake, but locals are lacking food to feed about 8,000 people.

Photo: WFP/Anne Poulsen