Update #4  April 3, 2024

Dear Reader!

Life in Port-au-Prince remains precarious.  Gangs continue to control much of the city.  But political activity is beginning to occur.  CARICOM (Caribbean Community) is a grouping of 20 Caribbean nations that have taken the lead in enabling a 9-member “transitional governing council” – composed of Haitian political leaders, as well as private sector, civil society and religious leaders.  The council would have the task of selecting an interim president and prime minister, who would in turn lead the country to a general election.  That group is not yet finalized but steps are being taken. 

On April 2, the US installed a new ambassador to Haiti, Dennis Hankins.  The post had been vacant since 2021.  Remarks at his confirmation hearing centered on the need to fill the role in order to “help coordinate, once the Kenyan-led multinational, multilateral security support mission is in place”.  The mandate of the military mission will be to protect the council and the transitional government, and facilitate the election process.

At Lamp, our staff remain safe and very eager to once again provide direct medical services.  However, Ms Mondesir, the Director of Haiti Communitere — where Lamp’s second site is located — feels that too much risk remains, and has asked us to be patient.  Last week, there was an attempt by gangs to take over the local police station.  The effort failed, but the area remains dangerous.  At our primary site in Cité Soleil, I am amazed to report, construction continued on flood control improvements and preparations to upgrade our solar energy system.  Local labor is being used and Lamp Manager Benoit Florestal is monitoring the activity on a day-to-day basis.   

Overall, gang conflicts are somewhat reduced and – although I fear this may not be a good idea – schools are set to resume next week.  Note that Lamp’s school sponsorship program continues, despite the constant disruptions, and has been of tremendous assistance to the children, families and schools that are involved.

In hope,

Jim, Henry, and Kelli

adminUpdate #4  April 3, 2024