Friday, 16 July 2010

Open Letter: Former President Bill Clinton On Haiti Earthquake

                                [Bill Clinton]

Dear Friend,

This past Monday marked six months since a devastating earthquake shook the coast of Haiti. I wanted to give you, a supporter of the Clinton Foundation and our work, a brief update on where things stand.

For the people of Haiti, each day since the earthquake is simply one more in the long process of rebuilding and re-imagining their future. One step at a time, with the cooperation of the international community and through the generosity of individuals like you, they are reconstructing their country, their families, and their lives. Although recovery is not going as quickly as many of us involved in the process would like -- progress is being made.

Despite the challenges, I remain committed to helping the people of Haiti build back better. Through the Clinton Foundation, as the United Nations Special Envoy for Haiti, and now as the co-chair of the Interim Haiti Reconstruction Commission along with Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive, I will continue to strive to help the Haitians build the nation that they desire and deserve.

With your support, the Clinton Foundation has provided the equivalent of $23 million worth of assistance to the people of Haiti since the earthquake in the form of grants to relief organizations, emergency supplies, and supporting the shipment and delivery of more than $16 million worth of goods, including more than 100 trucks, 14 pieces of heavy equipment, 32,680 solar flashlights, 24 tons of medicine and medical supplies, portable classrooms and educational supplies, 390,000 articles of clothing, and much more.

Additionally, the Clinton Global Initiative has facilitated over $100 million worth of commitments to help rebuild Haiti, the Clinton Health Access Initiative continues to work there to help provide access to essential health services, and recently, as a project of the Clinton Guistra Sustainable Development Initiative and Fundacion Carlos Slim, a $20 million fund for small- and medium-sized enterprises was announced to help Haitian entrepreneurs.

However, the scale and the urgency of the needs on the ground continue to be enormous. Millions of people still require shelter, access to basic services like education, water and sanitation, electricity, health care, and the tools to lift themselves from poverty. We still have a long road ahead.

Months and years of work remain to help the people of Haiti realize the future they have imagined for themselves.

I intend to be there every step of the way and I offer my humble thanks to you for being there alongside me.

Bill Clinton

(Bill Clinton is a former President of United States Of America and founder of William J. Clinton Foundation)