It was five years ago today that everything changed for Haiti. How is it now? The idiom, m’pa pi mal, couldn’t be more appropriate. Though this is usually what you say in Kreyol to the question koman ou ye or “how are you,” it doesn’t exactly translate as “I’m fine.”

Literally translated, it means: “I’m not any worse.”

Good things have happened, and bad things have also happened, since that terrible afternoon. I can’t say that there is much change in the grief for me, beyond that its jagged shapes are now known rather than lurking and unknown. I don’t wake up from nightmares of bodies under concrete as often as I once did, but it still happens. And I was thousands of miles away at the time. I can’t even begin to imagine how much more intense these feelings are for those who were in Haiti five years ago today.

Five years on, there is still far too much to be done. For those who lost family or home, or often both – and for the 80,000 (!) people still living in “temporary” shelters, tonight will not be magically different from the last five years of nights. Other than a day on a calendar, it is no different and things must still change. There is so much to be done still, and the pace at which my country and the rest of the world has offered its assistance, yet again, is shameful. So too is the response of the United Nations (don’t even get me started) and of Haiti’s government itself. As if there weren’t enough problems with thousands of people needing somewhere safe to live, there is still much political disruption to contend with, including a (potential) return to dictatorship as early as tonight, if Haiti’s parliament can’t get its act together in time.

How do you know what’s happening, if you don’t have family you can call? Here’s an aggregation of various reports on what’s going on, good and bad, in the Land of Mountains. Be aware of context. I’m trying to avoid the worst of the “disaster porn,” but I want to make sure I cover different contexts and angles.

Today’s news from Haiti Libre – many articles here.

Today’s news from the Haitian Times (aggregated from many sources) here.

ABC: “Five Year Anniversary Approaches” video (from 2010) and story here.

Khaleej Times (United Arab Emirates): “Haiti Pays Tribute to Quake Tragedy’s Dead” article here.

Boston Globe: “Hope links Haiti, Boston 5 years after quake” article here.

Fusion: “Five years after the Haiti earthquake: protests, voodoo, and rock and roll” article here.

Khaleej Times (United Arab Emirates): “Haiti Pays Tribute to Quake Tragedy’s Dead” article here.

Miami Herald: “Tens of thousands still living in tents 5 years after Haiti earthquake” article here.

NBC: “What Does Haiti Have to Show…” video and story here.

Reuters: “Haitians learn to live with disaster upon disaster” article here.

For my Haitian family, I have nothing but love. I miss you every day, but especially today when some of us – far too many of us – went to the angels.


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