Scientology Volunteers Establish Headquarters for Haiti
June 4, 2010
Pétionville, Haiti—The Church of Scientology International Volunteer Ministers opened a new headquarters Saturday, signaling a new level of commitment to the people of Haiti in rebuilding their country. Located just east of Port-au-Prince, the new headquarters will facilitate the staging and coordination of operations, and provide temporary housing for volunteers from outside Haiti.
The 7.0 magnitude earthquake that hit just west of the capital city of Port-au-Prince January 12 killed an estimated 200,000, injured 300,000 and left one million homeless. By January 17 Scientologists had orchestrated the arrival of 130 doctors, nurses, EMTs and Volunteer Ministers in Haiti. Working with United Nations and U.S. Army personnel at the country’s main airfield, initial actions included organizing and dispatching personnel and supplies. But within hours, the volunteers were manning hospital tents, supply lines, and search and rescue teams.
Operating on the Scientology Volunteer Ministers motto “Something CAN be done about it” the Scientology volunteers concentrate on bringing order into the immediate chaos of a disaster site and alleviating trauma through the use of Scientology Assists, “spiritual first aid” that speeds physical and emotional recovery. In alignment with their motto, Volunteer Ministers also bring a myriad of personal skills to a disaster zone, such as the trained midwife who helped deliver a baby less than a day after she arrived in Port-au-Prince, and six more over the next week, in dilapidated buildings amid aftershocks, electrical outages.
Scientology Volunteer Ministers have provided disaster relief around the globe for more than 20 years. In Haiti, over 300 from 22 countries answered the call for disaster relief and 3,000 Haitians have joined them in their efforts. Together they have brought physical and spiritual relief and order back into the lives of an estimated 360,000 Haitians.
Maria Reyher, International Director of the Scientology Volunteer Ministers, says the new Haiti headquarters gives a new level of stability and service potential to their relief and recovery activities in Haiti. “Thousands of Haitian people want to be involved in bettering the plight of their country and we have workable tools to help them,” says Reyher. “They face many rudimentary and complex problems and our new headquarters provides a stable place to make it possible to help them on an even wider scale.”