January 29, 2010
Help Over the Long Haul for Haiti
Wayne blogs on our continued work in Haiti
The HSUS’s primary mission has always been to help animals, but the value system that undergirds our work is more expansive. For us, those core values are responsibility, other-centeredness, and mercy, especially when it comes to the weak or vulnerable or less fortunate. Like every other person of conscience, we at The HSUS are heartsick about the human tragedy in Haiti. With several hundred thousand believed dead, and an estimated 3 million people left homeless, the Haitian earthquake crisis is only matched in impact, in recent memory, by the Indonesian tsunami. The world community has responded with remarkable charity, but despite those efforts, the situation remains desperate for the wounded and the needy.
In charting a course for helping animals in the midst of a crisis of this magnitude, we’ve been sensitive to the larger dynamic, but diligent in fulfilling our primary mission, especially knowing that so many others are focused on the human tragedy. Our trained responders found a pathway into Haiti as quickly as they could and fed the hungry and provided care to the distressed. We forged close working partnerships with local organizations attuned to the political, social, and practical realities of the situation. We mobilized veterinary response personnel, and created an internal working group at headquarters to support our work on the ground. We dispatched staff member Kelly Coladarci to the Dominican Republic to purchase equipment and supplies, and to clear the hurdles to getting them where we could put them into use.