By Daniel Tillias, Pax Christi Port-au-Prince Program Coordinator
Two days after the earthquake I wrote a reflection on what a major earthquake could teach all the world. As a peace worker and even more a dreamer, my wish was that the same sorrow that opened the wallet of people from all over the world in the first week after the disaster could also from that moment open their heart to advocate for no more war and more social justice in the world.
Two years later we did not see much change in the big picture. Haiti is still waiting for global reconstruction, people are still under the tent and there is much to do. Unfortunately, during the last two years, all around the international scene, we have heard a lot of violence and it seems the world did not learn the lesson. However, from the lot that still needs to be accomplished, we see in the different displaced camps a total resilience of people who seem to live only for hope.
If there is one good thing the earthquake did for our chapter in Haiti, it is with no doubt the opening of Cite Soleil in people’s mind as a neighborhood that needs attention after longtime abandon. Many are the visitors who come to what I call our sanctuary of hope, where the smile and dream of the children inspire the best to everyone. While things seem still difficult, our chapter celebrates the new community center building, we just built a wonderful community garden, we have now our girls soccer team, we have the first peace taptap, and so much we are grateful for while there is so much need to take care of.
I know some people feel despair because of not enough being accomplished after so much has been put into relief, but I respond that it would be just unimaginable if it were not for the support Haiti received. It will take some time before we fix everything here in Haiti and I asked people to be patient. It is still the right time to do what is right which is remembering Haiti is a neighbour that we need to be good with.