News from Ben, a photographer and reporter in Haiti (www.fonkoze.org)
"When the actual earthquake happened, my wife and I had just gotten back from work and were about to eat dinner.The house started shaking and so we ran outside. Just as soon as it stopped shaking we decided to run back inside. My wife changed clothes and we grabbed a pickax and water and some bandages—we hardly have any first-aid kit. We went out into the neighborhood surrounding our house. The whole zone—there’s just houses that had fallen everywhere. We were working for a while trying to pull people out. Just after the earthquake a lot of the people in our community were working together. People were helping strangers and pulling them out of the rubble. I think everyone here is pretty shell-shocked.
"Today we were driving past mass graves and there were dump trucks pouring bodies into mass graves. It’s just everywhere buildings are fallen down.
"The response on the ground—so many of the offices of the major organizations have been destroyed. Their main offices have fallen so there’s been no response on the ground.
"Right now there’s thousands of people out in the streets and in the parks. A lot of them are running out of water and a lot of people haven’t eaten since the earthquake. There’s probably hundreds or thousands of people still trapped under the rubble. There’s just been no emergency response. People in their own communities have been trying to find people, but other than that. . .That’s probably the worst part—just knowing there’s probably thousands of people still alive up until probably today. Probably today was the last day."
[Photo from MCC.org. Listen to Ben’s account at http://mcc.org/stories/podcasts/world-shaken.]