We directly support local responders who are best suited to rapidly deliver aid where it is most needed.
Photos of the Hurricane Matthew response led by Marie-Flore St. Fleur.
On the morning of October 4, 2016, Hurricane Matthew made landfall in southwestern Haiti, bringing 40 inches of rain and winds up to 145 miles per hour that caused flooding and widespread property damage throughout the communities we serve in Léogâne. It was an unexpected tragedy, but due to YourStory International’s history of working with the community, we were prepared to respond.
Marie-Flore St. Fleur, our co-founder, Haiti country director, and a Léogâne native, was there when Matthew struck. The night before Matthew made landfall, Marie opened the doors of our compound to locals who needed a safe place to wait out the storm. The next day, she began leveraging our local networks to purchase and distribute food and clean water to families in need with breathtaking speed, outpacing even the local government and other American NGOs. Within the first week, teams of local responders funded by YourStory International had distributed three days’ worth of supplies to over 500 families.
The response to Hurricane Matthew remains one of our proudest moments. Our network of Advocates began raising money in the United States immediately after the storm struck, ultimately raising thousands of dollars in small donations—60% of donations were $25 or less. Through our grassroots-to-grassroots approach, the money went directly to Haitians who carried out the response. The next time a natural disaster threatens Léogâne, we will be prepared to support our Haitian partners' efforts to protect their community.