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Storm emergency fades, hunger remains.

More than 150,000 people are surviving on donated food in the flood-battered city of Gonaives and the United Nations says more aid is urgently needed to stave off famine in parts of Haiti after ravaging storms, reports AP (Jan. 15, 2009):

Families are repairing mud-caked homes and markets have reopened, but the storms endangered a country struggling with chronic malnutrition. UN World Food Program country director Myrta Kaulard is asking countries to donate US$100 million, saying current funding would last only through February. U.N. and U.S.-sponsored groups say half Gonaives' population can feed themselves. To encourage local markets and tackle chronic hunger, they are scaling back public food distributions that had sustained nearly the entire city of 300,000 for months.;

They are shifting instead to target those most at risk (children and pregnant women). Food is distributed through school lunch programs, neighborhood canteens and programs rewarding work on streets, sewers and anti-erosion projects. More than 2,000 residents are being paid with food and cash to dig flood-control trenches in the mountains above Gonaives. Engineers said it will take 15 years to build enough to save the city from the next killer storm.

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Title Annotation:HAITI
Publication:Caribbean Update
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:5HAIT
Date:Mar 1, 2009
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