20,000 people in Haiti camps given £7m lifeline from Britain

At risk: children at a camp in Haiti. Up to £4.7 million will be spent relocating 17,500 of the most vulnerable to rented accommodation
Joseph Watts: Standard.co.uk

Britain will rescue almost 20,000 vulnerable people living in squalid emergency camps in Haiti since the disastrous earthquake of 2010.

The UK is to launch the plan, costing almost £7 million, as the Haitian hurricane season puts those in the camps at risk of flooding. Help will also go to women victims of sexual violence — who already number 200 this year — living in the crime-ridden shanty towns.

International Development Secretary Justine Greening said it is a “tragedy” that three years after the disaster, “people continue to live in tents, exposed to the elements and under the constant threat of crime and disease.

They are especially vulnerable to the approaching hurricane season.”  The earthquake killed more than 230,000 and left some 320,000 destitute in refugee camps around the Haitian capital, Port au Prince.

In a new type of aid programme, £4.7 million will be used to relocate 17,500 of the most vulnerable camp dwellers, who will get lump sums to rent homes for a year. Officials will encourage them to negotiate cheaper rents so they can use some of the money to set up a business.

Some of the £4.7 million will fund better water and sanitation in the camps, plus psychological support and cash for sexual violence victims, while £2 million more will fuel and maintain trucks carrying life-saving supplies to the camps.


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