An online crisis mapping tool initiated and operated by Kenyans has been assisting families and friends locate missing persons, following the horrendous earthquake that hit the Haitian capital three weeks ago.
The online mapping tool — www.ushahidi.com — is also being used by international organisations to mobilise assistance for the Caribbean nation. These organisations include the United Nations Foundation, Plan International, Charity Water and the International Red Cross Society.
Shortly after an earthquake devastated Haiti Jan. 12, the Miami, Fla., archdiocese offered to set up operation “Pierre Pan,” a program to resettle Haitian children in the United States, modeled after a similar “Pedro Pan” program in the 1960s that found homes for some 14,000 Cuban children.
The day after he floated the idea of Pierre Pan, even Randolph McGrorty, executive director of Catholic Charities Legal Services in Miami, admitted that it is too soon to focus on relocation and adoption. Haiti’s immediate needs must take precedence, McGrorty told the Sun-Sentinel newspaper Jan. 19. Continue reading Protecting Haiti’s children→
By Milagros Salazar
LIMA, Feb 1, 2010 (IPS) – Experts and activists in Peru complain that while mining corporations are cashing in on soaring metals prices, they continue to enjoy exemption from royalties and corporate taxes, if they reinvest their profits.
BBC News, Sao Paulo
By Gary Duffy Brazil’s government has granted an environmental licence for the construction of a controversial hydro-electric dam in the Amazon rainforest. Environmental groups say the Belo Monte dam will cause devastation in a large area of the rainforest and threaten the survival of indigenous groups.
However, the government says whoever is awarded the project will have to pay $800m to protect the environment.
The initial approval was a key step before investors could submit bids.
National Catholic Reporter
By Tom Hagan
Haiti — First Person Editor’s note: Fr. Tom Hagan, 68, a member of the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales, is founder of a nonprofit organization, “Hands Together” (handstogether.org), which began its work in 1985 when Hagan, then a chaplain at colleges in southeastern Pennsylvania, started taking students on visits to Haiti. Out of those visits grew a network of supporters and a respected relief organization. Hagan moved to Port-au-Prince in 1997 where he oversaw a program he had begun in Cité Soleil, that city’s largest and most desperate slum. The program is widely recognized as one of the most effective educational and health organizations in that area. Continue reading ‘I am humbled by these people’→
Geralda Jean-Narcisse, a school secretary in the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince, was so traumatized by the Jan. 12 earthquake and the devastation it wreaked around her that she could only think of one thing: getting home to Jacmel, the seaside town 50 miles southwest of the capital where her parents live.