Yesterday's earthquake in Haiti lists as "world news" on major news sites, but for many residents of Brooklyn, the event was both international disaster and personal catastrophe. Brooklyn houses the largest Haitian community in the United States--official numbers assert that 88,763 residents are Haitian or of Haitian descent, but given chronic under-reporting and under-counting in immigrant communities, the number is likely well over 100,000--and is a center of Haitian-American culture, the teenage home of MacArthur "genius" fellow Edwidge Danticat among others.
Disasters like yesterday's often leave me dumbstruck, incapable of processing the magnitude of the human suffering they entail enough to even talk about it, much less take constructive action. However, Nostrand Park's Ferentz Lafargue has penned a thoughtful report for Next American City that offers some hope in the midst of the destruction and offers several channels for constructive giving. Please give it a read.