Three of Haiti's largest departments are facing a major hunger crisis, some six months after Hurricane Matthew has left these communities almost completely devastated. .
About 80 percent of crops which would have normally been harvested in January and February in the affected areas were wiped out by the storm. Non governmental organizations and human rights advocates are now worried that the Grande-Anse, Sud and Nippes Departments could soon plunge into famine if appropriate measures are not taken by those in charge.
The Miami Herald recently reported that the NGO Food for the Poor found 240 people, including 84 women and 62 children, living in a cave near Jérémie in Grand’Anse. The President and CEO of the organization told the Miami Herald that “they have no food. They have no water. They have no shelter. It really is a crime against humanity.” The vice president of another NGO operating in the Grande Anse department told the Herald that “I don’t want to say that there could be mass starvation right away, but we could start to see 10, 20, and 30 people at a time dying.”
The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in a March report estimates that of the 2.1 million Haitians affected by the hurricane last October, 1.4 million still don’t have enough food or safe drinking water.