By Bill Frist, M.D.
January 19, 2010
This just in from USAID-DCHA.
· On January 18, Haitian Prime Minister Bellerive noted that the Government of Haiti (GoH) has declared a countrywide state of emergency and one month of mourning. The GoH is working to stabilize the situation in the country and has requested that banks, including at least 30 in Port-au-Prince, reopen on January 19, allowing businesses to distribute employees' salaries and restart operations.
· On January 18, the U.N. World Food Program (WFP) distributed emergency food items to approximately 100,000 people inside and outside Port-au-Prince, bringing the total number of food aid beneficiaries since the earthquake to 200,000 people. Within the week, WFP aims to distribute 10 million ready-to-eat meals through four humanitarian hubs and at approximately 30 additional locations across Haiti.
· The GoH is prioritizing a rapid return to economic activities through the establishment of food- and cash-for-work programs, including efforts to re-establish power and remove debris from roads, according to the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).
· The U.N. Protection Cluster, headed by the U.N. Children's Fund (UNICEF) and Save the Children, began meeting on January 18. Partners are establishing a system for displaced children, and the cluster will issue guidance on management of displaced children in the coming days. The cluster plans to establish child-friendly centers soon. In addition to the protection cluster, the U.N. has activated new clusters in early recovery and education.