'Haiti Documented' - Independent Journalists Share Stories and Images from the Field
Independent journalists Ruxandra Guidi and Roberto ('Bear') Guerra have reported from around the world, bringing important local and international stories to light. They combine images, writing and multimedia to show how poverty, climate change, health care and other international issues affect people's lives. This week, they visited us for our Lunch and Learn session to share their work from a reporting trip to Haiti in Fall 2008. Bear returned to Haiti shortly after this year's quake, and they both plan to go back for a three-week trip in July.
Right before they traveled to Haiti in 2008, a string of hurricanes had just hit the country. They saw it as a great opportunity to examine foreign aid. Bear and Ruxandra said the lack of functional infrastructure was just one example of what wasn't working.
Here are some of images they showed us that you can check out on their website:
- a group of kids playing in front of graffiti that reads in French ‘the coup d’etat hasn’t finished’
- a woman standing next to an open sewer in the streets of Port au Prince
- kids capturing birds to eat
- scenes from an overcrowded hospital in Port au Prince
They also showed images from Bear’s trip to Haiti after the earthquake this past February. Among them was a soccer stadium in the capital city that has turned into a big tent camp. Bear and Ruxandra said American imported tents were being sold on the black market, which shows how quickly underground markets develop in the face of great need. They said the same is true of food aid, such as with the rice and oil that’s distributed by USAID and other groups.
Other images they showed included:
- a portrait of a boy who had been pinned under his house for four hours
- kids flying kites over one of the camps
- people praying in the street on the one month anniversary of the quake
- a man getting his beard cut on the street because there was no barber shop
Bear and Ruxandra said their upcoming reporting trip in July will focus on the peasant movement that’s been happening since the 1970s. They said that before the quake, young Haitians wanted to leave the countryside to go to Port au Prince, but now they're choosing to stay and work in occupations such as reforestation, sustainable farming, and some are even building solar panels. Stay tuned to their website for more stories and images from Haiti later this summer and fall.