Laura – Biography/Biyografi

28 09 2010

Laura: An American anthropology doctoral student who was living in Bourdon at the time of the earthquake.  She is the site administrator.  She is 27 years old.  To read more about her earthquake experience, click here.

Etidyan ameriken kap fè doktora nan antwopoloji; li te abite Boudon pandan tranblemannditè.  Oryentatè sit la. Li gen 27 an.  Pou li plis enfomasyon sou eksperyans pa la pandan tranblemanntè (an anglè), klike la.





MINUSTAH takes a photo/MINUSTAH ap pran foto

8 06 2010

A MINUSTAH peacekeeper holds his camera phone out the back of the vehicle to take a photo of a taptap full of people.  June 2010.

Yon kas ble MINUSTAH ap pran foto taptap chaje moun.  Jen 2010.





Graffiti #2 — “Obama, We Need Change”

19 05 2010

In Pétionville. Nan Petyonvil. ©2010 Stories from Haiti





Manmi Zò

19 05 2010

Manmi Zò, “ti manmi nou an” kouman moun nan Site Solèy te rele l, te mouri 12 janvye nan tranblemanntè a 99 an devann legliz kote li te konn kanpe chak jou.  Li te fèt Jakmel nan lane 1910, e te vin Pòtoprens kom jen fi pou travay nan gwo kay, pandan premye okipasyon marin ameriken yo.  Li pat janm marye e pa janm te fè pitit li menm, men li te elve ak okipe anpil timoun òfelen ak abandone nan Site a, malgre li te malere li menm.  Lè nou te mande l kouman li te vin gen laj sa a, li te ose zepòl li e reponn, “M manje banann bouyi ak sòs pwa.”  Ale an pè, Manmi Zò.

Manmi Zò, at home in Boston, Cité Soleil, December 2009. Manmi Zò, lakay li an Boston, Site Solèy, desanm 2009. ©2010 Stories from Haiti

Manmi Zò (Mama Bones), “our little mama” as people in Cité Soleil used to call her, died on January 12 in the earthquake at the age of 99, in front of the church where she used to stand every day.  She was born in Jacmel in 1910, and came to Port-au-Prince as a young woman to work in one of the big houses during the first US occupation.  She never married or had children, but she raised and took care of many orphaned and abandoned children in Cité Soleil even though she was poor, herself.  When asked how she reached that age, she shrugged and replied, “I eat boiled plantains and bean sauce.”  Go in peace, Manmi Zò.





Cité Soleil after/Site Solèy aprè

23 04 2010

In purely physical terms, Cité Soleil was not as badly hit on January 12 as many other areas of Port-au-Prince.  Therefore, it was not prioritized for receiving aid.   As Marlène wrote in February, “Nan moman m’ap ekri w la, leta ak ONG di nan Site Solèy pa moun ki viktim.”  “At the moment that I write you this, the State and the NGOs say that the people of Cité Soleil aren’t victims.”   But this lack of prioritization ignores the fact that the community of Cité Soleil was particularly poor and marginalized before January 12, and therefore, in social and economic terms, particularly vulnerable to the earthquake and the resulting humanitarian crisis.

Nan sans fizik la, Site Solèy pat frape 12 janvye menm jan avèk kèk lot zòn Pòtoprens.  Rezon sa fe gouvenman ayisyen an pat mete l nan lis priyorite pou resevwa èd aprè evenman an.  Kom Marlène te ekri na mwa fevriye, “Nan moman m’ap ekri w la, leta ak ONG di nan Site Solèy pa gen moun ki viktim.”  Men, mank priyorite sa a meprize verite a: Site Solèy te deja viktim, sitou defavorize e gen plis ris nan sans sosyal ak ekonomik empak tranblemanntè a avek kriz imanitè ki te vin aprè tranblemanntè a.

BELOW: Tent cities on the Plas Fyète, Cité Soleil, February 2010.

ANBA: Sant debejman nan Plas Fyète, Site Solèy, Fevriye 2010. (Photo credit/kredi foto Alix)

BELOW:  Extremely precarious shelter in Cité Soleil, February 2010.
ANBA:  Ti tonnèl tre pa asire nan Site Solèy, Fevriye 2010.  (Photo credit/kredi foto Alix)

BELOW:  Children in tent communities are particularly at risk.  Cité Soleil, February 2010.
ANBA:  Timoun kap rete nan sant debejman sitou gen plis ris. (Photo credit/kredi foto Alix)

BELOW:  Temporary shelters spring up along Route 9, one of the main roads through Cité Soleil. (January 2010)
ANBA:  Titonnèl miltipliye akote Wout 9, yon wout prensipal ki travese Site Solèy. (Janvye 2010)
(photo credit/kredi foto: Marlène)

BELOW: St. Vincent de Paul Primary and Secondary School and Cultural Center in Boston, Cité Soleil.  Previously the site of grassroots community meetings.

ANBA: St. Vincent de Paul Lekòl Primè ak Sekondè ak Fwaye Kiltirel, Boston, Site Solèy.   Ansyenman, kote te konn genyen anpil reinyon oganizasyon baz lokal. (photo credit/kredi foto: Marlène)





Cité Soleil Before/Site Solèy avan

23 04 2010

In the shantytown community of Cité Soleil, life was precarious before the earthquake.  The following are photos of Cité Soleil before January 12, 2010.

Nan katyè popilè Site Solèy, lavi toujou te prekè, pa stab, jis avan tranblemanntè a.  Foto swivan yo te pran avan 12 janvye 2010.

Originally known as Cité Simone for the wife of Francois Duvalier, Cité Soleil expanded over the second half of the 20th century.  Its first residents were the displaced residents of the older shantytown La Saline, which burned under mysterious circumstances as Haitian industrialists sough to build  an industrial zone where La Saline was.    Many people came from the Haitian countryside to work in those industrial factories, including the now-defunct Hasco sugar refinery, the chimney of which can be seen in the distance, glimpsed from the neighborhood of Belekou (ABOVE).

Nan tan pase, sou Prezidan Franswa Divalye, Site Solèy te rele Site Simon.  Li te pote non sa a paske Madanm Divalye te rele Simon.  Site Solèy te grandi aprè 1960, lè leta a te fè tout moun nan ansyen katyè popilè Lasalin deplase a l rete nan Site a.  Yon gwo difè te detri tout Lasalin (pèsonn pa konnen kiyès ki te fè difè a) e tout rezidan Lasalin te oblije kite l.  Epi, anpil moun kite pwovens yo pou chache lavi nan faktori endistryel yo, ki ankli faktori sik Hasco (ki pa mache anko).  Chemine Hasco parèt nan foto a ki te pran nan Belekou (ANLE).

From 1999 to 2006, Cité Soleil was the site of virtual warfare among politically-positioned gangs (chimères), and between chimères and MINUSTAH peacekeepers.   The community still bears the physical and emotional scars of this violence, and also suffers from a universal reputation for violence and criminality both within Haiti and internationally, even though most residents were victims of the violence rather than perpetrators of it.

Nan epok 1999 a 2006, Site Solèy te konn fè anpil gè. anpil bandi nan zon sa a konn goumen ant yo sa vle di katye ak katye. tout moun te konnen yo sou nom sa  chimè, epi te konn gen ge ant chime yo ak MINUSTAH andedan site soley.  Kominote a toujou gen mak fisik ak emosyonel sou vyolans sa a, epitou soufri yon repitasyon inivèsel pou vyolans ak kriminalite, isit an Ayiti menm ak entenasyonalman, malgre pifò nan rezidan yo te viktim vyolans lan, tan pou kriminel.

BELOW:  Mural, Plas Fyète.  Behind the swing set, the people in the mural demand, “Aba Lavichè, Nou Vle Travay, Pa Fe Vyolans Sou Fanm, Aba Kidnaping, Nou Vle Lape, and Nou Gen Dwa Pou Nou Edike Tout Moun.”  Down with “Laviche” (literally, “life is unaffordable”), We Want to Work, Don’t Commit Violence Against Women, Dow with Kidnapping, We Want Peace, and We Should Educate Everyone.

ANBA:  Tablo sou mi a. “Aba Lavichè, Nou Vle Travay, Pa Fe Vyolans Sou Fanm, Aba Kidnaping, Nou Vle Lape, and Nou Gen Dwa Pou Nou Edike Tout Moun.”

In recent years Cité Soleil has received a great deal of attention from international organizations.  However, many of their interventions are done without input from community members. For example, many of the seemingly “modern” paved roads built by foreign development organizations are higher than the homes, which regularly leads to flooding whenever it rains.

Resanman, Site Solèy resevwa telman atansyon oganizasyon entenasyonal yo.  Epoutan, oganizasyon sa yo fè anpil pwoje san mande kominote a sa yo bezwen.   Pa egzanp, yo te konstwi anpil bel wout ki genlè “modèn” e pave ki pi wo pase kay yo, ki se yon nan kòz inondasyon le lapli tombe.

Flooding, October 2009. Inondasyon, Oktòb 2009

Flooding in Ti Ayiti October 2009. Inondasyon nan zòn Ti Ayiti Oktòb 2009

Early-morning after the rain, flooding in Belekou. Inondasyon nan Belekou gran maten aprè lapli, desanm 2009

Flooding inside Sainte Catherine Labouré Hospital – Solèy 17. Inondasyon nan Lopital Sainte Catherine Labouré -- Solèy 17.

Bailing water in Premye Site. Moun kap jete dlo in Premye Site.

BELOW: A morgue on Route National #1, which passes along the top border of Cité Soleil, advertises with a painting of a dead little girl going into God’s hands.  While this may seem to be manipulative or in poor taste, it reflects something of the precarious reality of life in this community.  November 2009.

ANBA:  Yon mòg nan Wout Nasyonal #1 (ki fè fwontyè Site Solèy anlè) fè piblisite avèk desen yon tifi mò kap antre nan men Bondye.   Petèt sa genlè degoutan oubyen manipulatè, men li reflechi reyalite danjere a ak ris ki egziste nan kominote sa a.  Novanm 2009.

BELOW: A young boy in Boston, Cité Soleil plays with a homemade kite.  December 2009.

ANBA: Yon ti gason nan Boston, Site Solèy ap jwe avèk yon kap ki li te fè li menm. Desanm 2009.





Normality endures/Nòmalite ap pèsiste

21 04 2010

Clothes drying in a tent community in Cité Soleil in February. It is not surprising that keeping clean is a priority in these trying times. There is a Haitian saying, “Rad se paspò pa w,” “Your clothes are your passport.” This means that however difficult your circumstances are, looking presentable is one of the keys to a better future. Rad ap seche nan yon sant debèjman nan Site Solèy nan mwa fevriye. Fòk nou pa sezi paske moun toujou bay anfaz pwòpte nan sityasyon red sa a. Kouman pwovèb la di, “Rad se paspò pa w.”

Even in the midst of so much loss, normality (or a new version of it) persists here in Port-au-Prince.  This disaster has forever changed the city and the people who experienced it, but people have no choice but to move forward.

Nan mitan tout  chagrensa a, nòmalite (oubyen yon nouvo vèsyon nòmalite) pèsiste isit an Pòtoprens.  Dezas la chanje, pou toutan, vil la ak tout moun ki te eksperyanse katastrof la, men moun pa gen chwa, yo oblije mache an’n avan toujou.

A MINUSTAH vehicle parked in front of the Domino’s Pizza in Pétionville, April. Machinn MINUSTAH kanpe devann Domino’s Pizza nan Petyonvil.

A chalkboard sign leans against a USAID tarp, advertising the “El Clásico” soccer match between Real Madrid and Barcelona in Delmas 32 in April. It encourages people to “come in a crowd to watch Messi” for ten Haitian gourdes (about 25 cents). Yon tablo apiye sou prela USAID, nan Delma 32 nan mwa avril. Yon piblisite pou match la (“El Clásico” ) ant Barcelon ak Real Madrid.

Clothes hung out to dry on the remaining rubble, Delmas 75. Rad kap seche sou dekonb ki rete nan Delma 75.

A merchant sells her wares in the shade of a partially-collapsed cement roof in Delmas 32 in April. Yon machann vann machandiz li nan lombraj yon dal prèske tonbe, nan Delma 32, mwa avril.

Seven-year-old Lala, who lost her aunt in the earthquake, and a small friend have some fun on a hot Sunday afternoon. Lala, 7 ane, ki te pèdi matant li nan tranblemanntè a, ak yon ti zanmi, amize yo pandan yon dimanch aprèmidi cho.








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