The back side of the residence of the Catholic bishop was damaged after an earthquake in Les Cayes, Haiti, Saturday, Aug. 14, 2021. (AP Photo/Delot Jean)The Associated Press

PORT-AU-PRINCE — Haiti needs nearly 200 billion gourdes, about US $1.97 billion, to reconstruct the Great South heavily damaged by the August 2021 earthquake, and will request the funds at Haiti’s international donor conference on Feb. 16. 

The conference will be held at the Karibe Convention Center in Haiti, and can be  followed from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET via https://media.un.org/en/webtv.

The conference devoted to the financing of reconstruction and recovery of the South of Haiti, is organized with Haiti’s partners, including the United Nations Integrated Office in Haiti (BINUH), the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank and the European Union, according to a BINUH’s announcement. Any funds donated would go toward elements for the Integrated Recovery Plan of the Southern Peninsula (PRIPS).

In September 2021, the United Nations Development Program announced it was leading the overall coordination of the recovery assessment on behalf of Haiti’s government. Since then, Haiti’s Ministry of Public Infrastructure, Transport and Communication, MTPTC, set up a task force to assess post-disaster needs and identify key actions to be taken. It also prepared the PRIPS.

The Aug.14 earthquake killed more than 2,200 people, devastated numerous cities in Haiti’s southern region — including Les Cayes, Jérémie, Saint Louis du Sud, Aquin, Petit Trou de Nippes, Anse-a-Veau and Cavaillon — and affected more than 800,000 people whose homes and businesses were badly damaged or destroyed. A total of 1,250 schools were destroyed, affecting more than 300,000 students, and 97 hospitals and health centers affected.

According to the United Nations, Haiti needs $54 million to take care of 754,000 people who are food insecure after the earthquake.

Meanwhile, southwestern Haiti has continued to experience tremors and aftershocks regularly, at times causing widespread panic among residents.

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