January 12, 2012
The January 12, 2010 earthquake in Haiti is a salient reminder of the fragility of life and how years of development work and progress can be wiped out in an instant.
Two years after the earthquake, Canada has shown to the people of Haiti—and the world—that we are there to support the millions of people whose lives were impacted by this tragic event. Canada has delivered humanitarian assistance, helped to rebuild institutions and infrastructure, and supported sustainable development based on the Haitian government's priorities.
Over the past two years, we have witnessed the unprecedented generosity of Canadians as well as the swift collaboration between CIDA, its partners on the ground, and other government departments. Together, we have done our utmost to help the Haitian people in their time of crisis. The Haitian government recognizes that Canada's support has been critically important.
In my trips to Haiti, I have seen our projects achieving significant results. Canada is leading various initiatives, such as training teachers, building health care facilities, providing nutritious daily meals to school children, revitalizing agricultural production, enabling access to microcredit, building infrastructure, and modernizing the civil registry.
To date, more than half of the earthquake debris has been removed. Electricity has been restored in 95 percent of previously serviced communities. And two thirds of displaced persons have resettled into new homes.
Canada is on track to disburse more than $1 billion in Haiti (2006-2012) to implement long-term development and to meet immediate humanitarian and reconstruction needs, which includes Canada's $400-million post-earthquake commitment over two years. Canada has fully earmarked both the $400-million commitment and the $220-million Haiti Earthquake Relief Fund, set up to match eligible donations by Canadians to registered Canadian charities. Through CIDA, the Government of Canada is delivering on its commitments in Haiti.
As we mark the second anniversary of this tragic event, we will maintain our commitment to the people of Haiti, who have shown tremendous courage. Looking forward, Canada—in partnership with the new Haitian government, the Haitian people, and others in the international community—will continue to help rebuild Haiti and deliver on the hope for a better future.
The Honourable Beverley J. Oda
Minister of International Cooperation