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Emergency Committee


Natural disasters seem to be frequent occurences on Lagonav. Drought, hurricanes, earthquakes, lymphatic filariasis, cholera, chikungunya, COVID -19. They have all threatened to wreak havoc across the island of Lagonav. When there is a crisis, Matènwa's Emergency Committee (EC) assesses each situation by walking throughout the Matènwa community and surrounding communities to talk with people and find out their greatest needs. The committee shares its findings with MCLC staff and together they decide on a course of action.  Usually the first step is to go back out into the community to squelch misinformation and to spread vital facts and advice. 


On Lagonav, the 2010 Earthquake demolished thousands of homes. The communities surrounding Matènwa each had 20-30 damaged homes. The EC felt compelled to offer help to these 8 communities even though they did not have enough money to replace all the demolished houses in Matènwa.  The EC asked each community to choose 3 families they felt were in the most need. Then with the participation and input of the family, the EC helped the family build a new home.  MCLC managed to help 28 families with only 60 thousand dollars. 

When cholera reached the island of Lagonav, Matènwa was ready. the EC secured a box of rehydration packets to have on hand; they had Matènwa's popular theatre group performing cholera skits; and they went door to door to explain how the disease was transmitted and to give out bottles of bleach. The EC is proud to say that there has never been a single case of cholera in Matènwa.


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