UN Good Will Ambassador Angelia Jolie donated $1 million to Doctors Without Borders through the Jolie-Pitt Foundation. Earlier this week, she visited Haiti. And among the places she stopped included a hospital in the Dominican Republic, the UN’s logistical headquarters, and the orphanage from which 33 children were taken by 10 Americans who are now being held on kidnapping charges by Haitian authorities. From the UN News Center:
“It will take years to rebuild Haiti,” Ms. Jolie, a Goodwill Ambassador for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), said after seeing the devastation for herself.
“Every day, the UN, governments, NGOs [non-governmental organizations] and local organizations are providing more people with protection, food, water, shelter and health care, yet the needs are still enormous and the displacement could last a decade,” she stated.
On arriving in the capital, Ms. Jolie was briefed by the top UN official on the ground, Edmond Mulet, on the scale of the humanitarian operation and the remaining challenges.
She noted that providing adequate shelter to the displaced is crucial in light of the upcoming rainy season, which could add to the devastation. “Everyone is bracing themselves for a second wave of tragedy,” she said.
While at the SOS Children’s Villages in the Santo area of Port-au-Prince, Ms. Jolie applauded the work of the organization which began providing additional care for children who have been newly orphaned or who have lost contact with their parents as a result of the quake.
She stressed that new adoptions should definitely not be encouraged as an immediate response to the emergency. “Haiti had many trafficking problems before the earthquake and now must keep a very close watch on the children. I would encourage as much support as possible to groups like SOS and UNICEF providing care for children in country.”
During her visit, Ms. Jolie also visited a tented hospital set up and run by UNHCR partner Médecins Sans Frontières in the commune of Delmas in Port-au-Prince.
“I was struck by the strength and spirit of the Haitian people. Children as young as nine months old were coping with amputations with extraordinary resilience.”