Posted on September 21, 2010

Haitians Cry in Letters: ‘Please–Do Something!’

Deborah Sontag, New York Times, September 19, 2010

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When the International Organization for Migration added suggestion boxes to its information kiosks in scores of camps, it did not expect to tap directly into a well of pent-up emotions. “I anticipated maybe a few cranky letters,” said Leonard Doyle, who handles communications for the organization in Haiti. “But to my absolute, blow-me-down surprise, we got 700 letters in three days from our first boxes–real individualized expressions of suffering that give a human face to this ongoing tragedy.”

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Several writers sent terse wish lists on self-designed forms: “Name: Paul Wilbert. Camp: Boulos. Need: House. Demand: $1,250. Project: Build house. Thank you.”

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{snip} “We are so powerless,” she [Sandra Felicien] said. “It is like we are bobbing along on the waves of the ocean, waiting to be saved.”

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