Hurricane Matthew Emergency Response

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Hurricane Matthew Emergency Response

Hurricane Matthew struck Haiti on Tuesday with fierce 145 mph winds and torrential rain, causing widespread flooding and devastating destruction in the country’s southern peninsula. This was the first category 4 hurricane to hit Haiti since 1964.

Rescue workers have been working around the clock to reach the worst hit areas of Haiti's southern peninsula that are cut off due to washed out bridges, impassable roads, and severed communication networks. While the full extent of the damage remains unknown, aerial images show flattened houses, decimated infrastructure, and extensive agricultural destruction. Several coastal towns were completed destroyed.

Heartline Ministries is launching an emergency relief and recovery program to meet the critical needs of children and families we serve and provide much needed resources to partner organizations working in the worst affected areas. Trusted partner organizations Christian Veterinary Mission and Mission Aviation Fellowship have extensive experience working with grassroots organizations in the southern provinces of Sud and Grand’Anse where many thousands of people will require emergency assistance in the coming days and weeks of this humanitarian crisis. 



Aerial photo taken by Tim Schandorff, Mission Aviation Fellowship

Prior to the hurricane’s landfall in the southern provinces, thousands of Haitians were still living in temporary camps set up for displaced people following the 2010 earthquake that killed over 200,000 people. The region has also been ravaged by a devastating cholera epidemic. The number of cholera cases will dramatically increase without clean water and sanitation.

Heartline Ministries and partners are committed to the following principles:
  • Locally sourcing and purchasing all food, supplies, and other emergency materials.
  • Working through well-established and trusted grassroots organizations led by local Haitian leaders.
  • Adhering to the SPHERE universal minimum standards in humanitarian response.
Please Help Now:
  • Pray. Please pray for safety, protection, and relief assistance for victims of this disaster.
  • Give. Please help us respond quickly during the critical first hours and days of this response.
  • Follow. We will post real time updates to our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages. Please follow us there to stay connected.
A note to faithful Heartline Ministries donors: The children and families served through Heartline programs are counting on your continued support. We appreciate your ongoing, regular giving that funds our existing ministries.

To donate by check, please make checks payable to Heartline Ministries and designate "Hurricane Relief." Mail to:
Heartline Ministries
P.O. Box 898
Sunnyside, WA 98944

About Heartline Ministries
Heartline Ministries has been working in Haiti for over 25 years. Based in the capital city of Port-au-Prince, Heartline Ministries works to strengthen Haitian families and prevent children from becoming orphans by empowering Haitians with education, employment, maternal and infant health care, job skills training, and Christian outreach. For more information, visit www.heartlineministries.org.

Stewardship is of utmost importance to Heartline Ministries. We are committed to excellent financial management of the resources entrusted to us. Donations will be used for emergency relief and long-term recovery efforts in response to Hurricane Matthew.

  • Update #4 - Wednesday, October 12

    almost 47 years ago



    Thank you for your outpouring of prayer and generous support!

    It has been just over a week since Hurricane Matthew made landfall in Haiti on October 4, leaving a torrent of destruction in its wake. The brutal trail of damage left by the hurricane becomes more apparent with each passing day as relief teams reach the hardest hit remote and mountainous areas of Haiti’s southern peninsula that were previously cut off by impassable roads, downed trees, and destroyed infrastructure.

    Hundreds of people lost their lives. Many more thousands lost their homes, livelihoods, and crops. The reality of this humanitarian crisis is truly heartbreaking and the needs are much greater than we originally anticipated.

    Thank you for standing with us as we work to protect the lives and dignity of survivors desperate for help. You have reached across the world with your financial gifts and prayerful solidarity, and for that we are deeply grateful.

    Heartline Ministries and trusted partners have been working nonstop to provide lifesaving emergency assistance where it’s most needed. Thanks to your generosity, Heartline provided Mission Aviation Fellowship with $10,000 to fund five large aircrafts filled with emergency food, water purification kits, tarps and other temporary shelter materials, and additional supplies to communities with acute relief needs.

    In the past week, we have distributed tarps, rope, mattresses, ladders, tools to clear debris, 55 gallon water drums, rice sacks, beans, cooking oil, over 10,000 water purification tablets, and a large tent for a church that was destroyed. Cash grants to purchase food locally were granted to Heartline families badly affected by the storm.

    We also rebuilt four badly damaged houses of Heartline staff families, providing lumber, metal roofing sheets, cement, and other construction supplies.


    Heartline team unloading construction materials to rebuild homes near coastal town Les Cayes

    Relief: Save Lives


    Heartline and trusted partners will continue to focus on providing lifesaving emergency relief in the coming days and weeks. The major needs are food, clean water, and temporary shelter materials.

    Clean water is the most pressing need due to the extensive contamination of natural water sources by stormwater and sewage overflow during the storm. Haiti was fighting a cholera epidemic when the hurricane hit, and the disease is now spreading more rapidly and already claiming lives. Heartline will continue to prioritize the distribution of clean water and water purification tablets.

    Food insecurity and malnutrition are major concerns since the hurricane struck during the region’s harvest, destroying the primary food supply and livelihood for farmers. Heartline and partners will continue purchasing food produced in Haiti to boost the local economy while feeding hungry children and their families.

    Thousands of survivors lost their homes in the hurricane and are living in the open air, vulnerable to the weather. We will continue providing tarps and reconstruction materials to repair homes and provide adequate temporary shelters until more permanent solutions are available.

    Recovery: Build Back Better

    Once the initial relief period has passed, Heartline and trusted partners will shift attention to longer-term recovery efforts to help families rebuild homes and recover livelihoods and agricultural assets.

    Christian Veterinary Mission will work with grassroots organizations to provide expert veterinary care and disease prevention to the livestock of subsistence farmers whose livelihoods depend on productive animals. With the harvest completely destroyed, providing seeds for planting and replacing other agricultural inputs will help to stave off hunger and malnutrition.

    Nearly half of Heartline employees have immediate family members living in the worst affected areas, with homes severely damaged or completely destroyed. Heartline is committed to helping them rebuild their homes and providing other essential support.



    Haiti Housing Fund

    Heartline is pleased to announce the “Haiti Housing Fund," a partnership with Maxima, a Christian woodworking company based in Haiti that employs Haitians and builds the local economy by producing everything in country. Heartline has previous experience with Maxima, most extensively after the 2010 earthquake when Maxima manufactured and delivered over 10,000 house kits to survivors.

    Maxima produces housing kits that build quality homes certified to be anti-seismic and resistant to hurricane winds up to 108mph. This level of structural integrity will help survivors to build back better and prevent them from becoming victims should another natural disaster occur. The standard house kit costs $2,750, with an estimated total cost per house of $3,500 with labor.

    As Heartline continues to work in partnership with trusted indigenous leaders based in the worst affected rural communities, this collaboration with Maxima will streamline housing assistance for hundreds of displaced families living in temporary housing.

    Thank you for your ongoing prayers and support. Please continue to follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for real-time updates.

    Stewardship is of utmost importance to Heartline Ministries and we are committed to excellent financial management of the resources entrusted to us. All funds received will be used for emergency relief and long-term recovery efforts in response to Hurricane Matthew.

    Posted by: Hurricane Matthew Emergency Response

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  • Update #3 - Saturday, October 8

    almost 47 years ago

    Dear partner,

    Thank you for your generous contribution to Heartline’s Hurricane Matthew Relief Fund. I’m deeply grateful to share that we have nearly reached our initial goal of raising $25,000 to provide emergency food, water purification tablets, and other critical relief supplies to children and families in need of help. Thank you for standing with us as we work with our partners to protect the lives and dignity of survivors.

    Now that aid groups and Heartline’s team have reached some of the communities that were initially inaccessible due to impassable roads, overflowing rivers, and destroyed infrastructure it is evident that the extent of the damage is far greater than previously understood. We are shocked and saddened by the depth and breadth of destruction to people’s homes and livelihoods, and the increasing reports of loss of life from Haiti’s southern peninsula.

    In light of this heartbreaking reality, Heartline Ministries’ leadership has decided to increase the impact of our relief and recovery program - doubling this fundraiser’s goal to $50,000.


    Photo Credit: Michael Capponi - Global Empowerment Mission

    With increased funds, Heartline and trusted partner organizations will be able to provide for the longer term recovery needs of victims. Providing life-saving assistance is the priority today and in the coming days and weeks. After the initial relief period, we are committed to helping families rebuild their lives and assets.

    Thank you for standing with those in Haiti during this difficult time, and for partnering with local organizations who are best equipped to respond to the needs of their communities. We are deeply moved by your outpouring of support for the victims of Hurricane Matthew.

    You can continue to support Heartline’s efforts by helping to share the reality of what many Haitians are facing in the wake of this storm.

    From all of us at Heartline, I thank you for your partnership and prayers.

    Gratefully, 

    Troy Livesay

    Director, Heartline Ministries


    Stewardship is of the utmost importance to Heartline Ministries and we are committed to excellent financial management of the resources entrusted to us. All funds received will be used for emergency relief and long term recovery efforts in response to Hurricane Matthew.

    Posted by: Hurricane Matthew Emergency Response

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  • Update #2 - Friday, October 7

    almost 47 years ago

    It has been three days since Hurricane Matthew struck Haiti. Aerial assessments confirm heartbreaking destruction across the southern peninsula, with some coastal towns completely destroyed. Flattened homes, decimated infrastructure, and near complete destruction of agriculture remain in the hurricane’s wake.

    Reaching victims remains the priority because the only bridge connecting the capital city of Port-au-Prince to the worst hit areas in the southern peninsula was destroyed. Food insecurity and water contamination are of greatest concern. Farmers lost the harvest they would have had this month, and with that both subsistence and income for their families. A resurgence of cholera is feared as clean water supplies diminish.


    Photo courtesy of Tim Schandorff, Mission Aviation Fellowship

    Heartline Ministries and partners Christian Veterinary Mission and Mission Aviation Fellowship have been hard at work assessing needs, making plans, and delivering food and emergency supplies. Yesterday a Heartline team reached Les Cayes, one of the worst affected coastal towns. After a difficult river crossing, the team delivered food, tarps, and tools/hardware for clearing debris. The assessed priority needs are food, water purification tablets, tarps and other temporary shelter materials, roofing materials, and debris removal tools. Heartline is making preparations for a return trip to Les Cayes with more emergency supplies this weekend.

    Heartline has been in contact with nearly all children and families who participate in ongoing programs, as well as Heartline staff. There are at least 20 families who lost everything in the wake of the hurricane. Heartline is assessing their needs and will help them rebuild their homes and livelihoods.


    Heartline team loading up supplies headed for heavily hit coastal town Les Cayes

    Christian Veterinary Mission has coordinated the delivery of water purification tablets, human and veterinary medications, and other relief supplies to various affected communities where they work with local farmers. CVM will deliver a large supply of water purification tablets and other supplies to coastal town Port Salut and others tomorrow. For just $25, a total of 750 gallons of water can be treated with the tablets Heartline has sourced. CVM will also provide expert veterinary care and disease prevention to the livestock of subsistence farmers whose livelihoods depend on productive animals.

    Mission Aviation Fellowship airplanes have conducted extensive damage assessments and delivered food/relief supplies and emergency aid workers throughout the southern peninsula.

    Heartline and partners are committed to purchasing all food and supplies locally. The only exception will be items such as tarps whose local supply will soon be exhausted.

    Thank you for your contribution to the Hurricane Matthew Relief Fund. We are halfway to our goal of raising $25,000 to provide critical relief aid in partnership with trusted indigenous groups to vulnerable children and families. We are very grateful for your support, which is providing help where it’s most needed. 

    Please contine to follow and share updates on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

    Posted by: Hurricane Matthew Emergency Response

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  • Update #1 - Wednesday, October 5

    almost 47 years ago

    Christian Veterinary Mission and Mission Aviation Fellowship are diligently working to reach disaster victims to assess critical emergency needs. MAF surveyed the damage by air today, confirming decimation of major infrastructure, agriculture, and housing along the coast of the southern peninsula. We anticipate the greatest needs will be food aid, potable water, tarps and other temporary shelter materials, hygiene kits, and other essential household items during the relief phase of the response.

    Longer term recovery efforts will likely focus on food insecurity and livelihood recovery, including grants to reestablish agriculture, animal husbandry, and small enterprises.

    Posted by: Hurricane Matthew Emergency Response

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