Five hundred twenty five thousand six hundred minutes. Yet in a few hours it was all gone. Usually my family vacation to Haiti is to visit family and friends. Haiti is such a wonderful place, full of joy, pure nature and so much more. I can honestly say there is no place like it. Tuesday afternoon January 12th tragedy stuck, a 7.0 magnitude earthquake took the lives of millions. As soon as it was clear to go to Haiti my family and I went to go help in any way possible. Seeing pictures don’t justify what really happened. People say a picture is worth a thousand words but the place I grew up knowing, the love, joy, faith had all vanished. Some of my own family is now living in tents, so many wounded and begging for help. In Port-Au-prince several people were running up seeking medical treatment. I’ve never seen such horror yet the citizen’s of Haiti united. Those with vehicles turned them into ambulances and were transporting the victims of the earthquake to hospitals outside of Port-Au-Prince, due to the hospitals being over crowded with the wounded and injured. Others opened up their homes to shelter victims that got lost and could not locate any family members or, victims who had just gotten out of the hospitals and had no place to go. The citizens of Haiti basically adopted the victims. Some made tents from the clothes and any material they had to give shelter to others. On January 12th a whole nation stood together as one pushing their own problems aside to help another country that has been broken. Several countries such as France, United States, Dominican Republic, Iceland, China, and Qatar as several other and service groups, Celebrities came to aid. At my school we started a hope for Haiti fund to send help; there were thousands of funds and programs made in order to help Haiti in their time of need. Some of the people that came to aid only could describe it as a Holocaust. Millions of bodies lay dead many of them with a proper barrel. An estimated 316,000 people had died, 300,000 had been injured and 1,000,000 made homeless. Hands reached out some for help others for prayer, and some little hope that everything will be okay. Looking in the faces of the children looking into their eyes just tore me up inside to know that a kid my age or less had to go through this pain and lost. Tears rolling down their eyes, some had their legs or arms amputated due to infections other lost parts from when the building collapsed on them.From this outer body experience I’ve notice that I have taken life and its gifts for granted. You truly never know what you have until it’s taken from you.
â–º Quarter Finalist 2011 Teen Travel Writing Scholarship
Most of us are superficial and think that money, and name brand clothes are the most important things, but truly those should be the last things we have on our minds. I am so lucky and blessed to have those things in my life but, the people of Haiti have taught me so much. If all they had was each other, their faith, food and shelter they would be more grateful than most of us. Once a wise man once said “The world we have created is a product of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking”. My experiences in Haiti have truly changed my view of everything.
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