Haiti Relief Fund Only 20% Full

The World Bank said yesterday that a 500-million dollar pledge of aid for Haiti quake relief promised in late March is only 20 percent full. Pamela Cox, the bank’s vice president for Latin America, told reporters that the Haiti Reconstruction Trust fund now stands at 98 million dollars. So far, Australia, Brazil, Colombia, Estonia, and Norway have contributed to the fund. The 500 million dollar fund is part of a five-year, 10 billion dollar relief package donor countries agreed to provide for Haiti’s rebuilding efforts.

Cox explained that aid funds are often tied up in recession-hit national budgets but that she hoped to get “most of the money by the first anniversary” of the earthquake on January 12, 2011. She also said that “the pace of reconstruction has not been as rapid as we would have hoped” but that the pledges were coming in “at a normal pace,” recalling that donor pledges made after the devastating 2004 tsunami in Asia took up to two years to arrive.

Haitians on Monday marked the first six-months after the disaster with growing impatience at the slow trickle of aid and the crawling pace of reconstruction, with experts predicting it could take 20 years just to clear the rubble from the streets. According to the United Nations office in Haiti, nearly 4,000 small homes have been built in a project that anticipates building some 10,000 houses.

For full article, see http://www.caribbeannetnews.com/news-23958–2-2–.html

Photo from http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Americas/2010/0123/With-plastic-and-cardboard-Haitians-build-communities

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