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Old 01-12-2010, 09:01 PM   #1
Joe Riley
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Default Haitian Earthquake Appeal

A major earthquake hit Haiti today, registering 7.0 on the Richter scale. It was centered 14 miles west of Port-au-Prince, the capital.

I'm ashamed to admit it, but my first thoughts were for Barbancourt. There are many people dead, houses destroyed, lives ruined, a country in distress, and all I can think about is the great rums of Barbancourt. I'm not proud of myself.

I'm sure that there are members of this board who have been to Haiti. What are your thoughts? Do you know folks who live or work there?

It's January, this must be the high season for tourism. I fear that we haven't heard the worst of this sad event yet.
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Old 01-13-2010, 01:07 AM   #2
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Pathetic...
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Old 01-13-2010, 04:03 AM   #3
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Default Haitian Earthquake Appeal

I figure as rum drinkers we owe a bit to Haiti. They've given us Barbancourt (yum!) and Clairin (uggh!). They also supply many of the bitter oranges used in Cointreau, Grand Marnier, and other triple secs. How would we manage without them?

Haiti just got hit by a pretty bad earthquake. This is coming after the Gonaive floods of 2008, and the school collapse that occurred (I think) last year. Before that they had the political chaos that led to the UN getting deployed there. In the Dominican Republic I spoke with Haitian girls who claimed to have seen their neighbors shot dead by gangs who were better armed than the police (maybe stories for a gullible tourist, but probably the truth). That was the situation before the UN went in. Even with the current UN presence the situation is still fragile, and this latest earthquake will not have helped.

Can I encourage all you rum drinkers to consider donating - ideally to the American Red Cross? I believe that those of you in the U.S. can text “HAITI” to 90999 to donate $10 to American Red Cross relief for Haiti.

I've pitched in $100 (the cost of a good bottle of rum), and if you care to visit my website you'll find me gently tugging at heart strings, encouraging drinkers to open their pockets, and linking to the American Red Cross.

I'll admit I am a bit skeptical about aid work. The aid workers I met in Haiti included plenty of incompetents, charlatans, egoists and plain old weirdos. However, we mustn't let the bad stuff detract from the good. Even the oddballs are usually doing good things - just not in the best way.

I'd recommend the Red Cross as reputable and efficient, having excellent reach into the areas where help is most needed, and having no hidden agenda.
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Old 01-13-2010, 04:29 AM   #4
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We should really be donating money before wondering about the fate of Barbancourt.

I didn't see this thread, and so started my own in the off topic forum. I also wrote a little on my blog.

My first thoughts when I saw the news weren't for Barbancourt. They were for the people I met in Haiti who made my visit pleasant - and the ones who made it unpleasant. I just hope all those people who are a part of my memories of the place, good and bad, are OK.

And obviously I hope the rum is OK too.

Moved the above post to this section of the forums. Edward Hamilton
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Old 01-13-2010, 06:42 AM   #5
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Thanks Joe and bunnyhugs for posting this. I'm shocked at what I've seen and heard on the news and the ham radio networks operating to help coordinate relief.

I agree that the Red Cross is probably the most efficient conduit for aid to the people.

I hope to have some news soon, but the last report I saw said that communications were down including cell phones. Hopefully there will be a few internet connections, but there are a lot more things to deal with than rum at this point.
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Old 01-13-2010, 08:57 AM   #6
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Default Haiti earthquake & Barbancourt

Terrible, awful, devastating earthquake in Haiti. At a time like this, it's not a priority, but I will be curious in the days to come to hear about damage & effects to Barbancourt.
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Old 01-13-2010, 09:23 AM   #7
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Please help spread the word-- this is a terrible tragedy and setback for Haiti. I will find out about the various charities and organizations to which donations can be made (e.g., Red Cross, OxFam) and report back.
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Old 01-13-2010, 11:07 AM   #8
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OxFam's Haiti Relief

International Red Cross Haiti Relief

Doctors without Borders

DirectRelief International

ShelterBox.org ShelterBox provides disaster relief kits -- see this Youtube video of their amazing work.

PortlightStrategies.org

MercyCorps Haiti Relief

Buya.org runs orphanages in the Haitian cities Cite Soleil and Titanyen.

Here are some faith-based groups already operating in Haiti: Catholic Relief Services, World Vision (which lets you sponsor a child under their care), a quaker org American Friends Service Committee, and the United Methodist Committee on Relief, which uses 100% of donations on relief.

Cell Phone Programs:

The US State Department has set up a cellphone donation link: Text "HAITI" to 90999 and you will be charged for a $10 donation to relief efforts.

Also, major cell phone carriers will send a $5 donation on your account if you text YELE to 501501.
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Old 01-13-2010, 11:09 AM   #9
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My Money is in, and although it wasn't my 1st thought, yes I too thought of Barbancourt, and probably faster than I should. I've known some that have done mission work in haiti before and your heart does go out to those that live in a nation with so much tragedy.
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Old 01-13-2010, 12:22 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Riley View Post

I'm ashamed to admit it, but my first thoughts were for Barbancourt. There are many people dead, houses destroyed, lives ruined, a country in distress, and all I can think about is the great rums of Barbancourt. I'm not proud of myself.
Don't beat yourself up Joe. I believe the term for what you went through is called disassociation (Read that in Discover a while back). Basically the human organism is evolved such that when tragedy strikes someplace far away, unless we are connected in some way with those involved it is very hard to have an emotional response. If we did just think of how wracked emotionally we would be with all the tragedies in the world. Your first emotional thought was for the one thing in the area to which you feel a connection, the rum. That's Okay, and that's honest.

Now your intellectual response was a feeling of guilt over your emotional response. That speaks volumes about you as a person, and tells me you are a good sort of person with perfectly normal and human reactions.

I too encourage those are who are so inclined to help out in the manners in which they are able. I see many good links here to guide our efforts.
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