Local experts key to USAID’s Hurricane Matthew response

Wednesday, December 7, 2016
USAID/OFDA disaster consultants Ralph Simon (middle) and Marc-Henry Beauzile (right) assess the needs of families staying at a school in Grand’Anse Department to determine how USAID can best assist people displaced by Hurricane Matthew.
Irene Gago, USAID

We recently introduced you to members of USAID’s Hurricane Matthew Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART), which deployed to Haiti as the Category 4 storm barreled across the Caribbean Sea in early October 2016. Now, we’d like you to meet some more of our team — the local disaster experts stationed around the country who have been supporting the DART’s humanitarian response on the ground.

As our DART mobilized in Port-au-Prince, our local disaster experts began reporting conditions from their regions and coordinating with Haitian authorities. Their community knowledge and connections helped USAID prioritize humanitarian needs in the aftermath of the storm, which left 1.4 million Haitians in need of immediate assistance and destroyed more than half of the roads in parts of Haiti’s southwestern peninsula.

Two months after Hurricane Matthew struck Haiti, we asked a few of these dedicated humanitarian workers to reflect on their experience working with USAID to help their country recover from this once-in-a-generation storm. Read their stories on our Medium blog here.