What will it take for us to care one year after Haiti earthquake?

One year ago today, Haiti was in ruins. A 7.0 magnitude earthquake destroyed the small island nation located only 700 miles from the U.S.

Today, Haiti is still recovering from the earthquake that not only destroyed thousands of lives, but also the country’s entire infrastructure.

After the initial shock, nations around the world responded valiantly sending emergency personnel, food, water and funds.

But now, only one year later, we believe that the majority of Americans have moved on and forgotten and proscribed to, forgive the cliché, “out of sight, out of mind.”

We are one of the richest countries in the world and yet some of our closest neighbors struggle to survive on a daily basis.

We would like to commend the Newman Center Haiti Connection group that, even before the earthquake, visited Haiti regularly to provide aid.

In an article in today’s issue, Doris Nordin, a campus minister at the Newman Catholic Center, visited Haiti with students from The Haiti Connection over winter break “We have personal connection with them,” Nordin said. “Even if I hadn’t been there (before the earthquake), I felt so concerned for them.”

This group of students was not from Haiti and many of them had never been there before, but they still gave up their winter break to help others.

So what does it take for everyone else to still care?

Some would say that our responsibility to the welfare of a third world country that shares our corner of the globe is minimal; that we have an obligation to our own people first.

At first, after seeing the horrifying images on the news people might have donated a few dollars by texting “HELP” to some organization, but soon the jokes began and people began to forget.

But the people in Haiti can never forget.

Although Haitians are living in tent cities and bearing the burden of their memories the people in Haiti still have hope according to the article.

Kevin Martin, a graduate business administration major, is a member of The Haiti Connection and went to Haiti over winter break.

Martin told the Daily Eastern News he saw people in Haiti trying to get by with what they have by selling objects on the street, washing cars and filling tires with air. “They’re always looking to the future and they’re not dwelling on the past,” Martin said.

Our responsibility goes beyond sending funds to a poverty-stricken country for a few months; we have a moral obligation to help where help is needed during and after a disaster strikes while we are in a position to do so.