Dateline: October 20, 2016 – Fondwa, Haiti
Hurricane Causes Heavy Damage to Campus
(Left to Right) The landscape was ravaged, food crops decimated and property damage extensive.
UNIF’s Vice President of Administration and Planning and Interim President, Maggie Bellabe-Charles, reports that staff, faculty and students in the Fondwa area all survived the hurricane without physical harm.
While UNIF is still adding up the economic cost of the hurricane, it was immediately evident that the UNIF campus and surrounding communities suffered substantial damage.
Per Mrs. Bellabe, many of the trees are down, and crops and livestock have been lost. The roof of the restaurant, where students and faculty eat, as well as the roofs of several of the repurposed shipping containers which serve as student housing, were simply ripped off by the storm winds.
UNIF’s solar system donated and installed by Benoit Maubrey (from Germany) in 2015 survived with only minor damages. However, the internet and cell phone connections to UNIF and surrounding areas are non-operational. Natcom (the provider) is uncertain when repairs will be completed.
UNIF Campus One, which houses administrative offices and the Business Management School lost its roof, but repairs are underway. Campus Two, a newly acquired space where the Schools of Agronomy and Veterinary Medicine are located, was severely damaged and is currently undergoing repairs.
In the immediate aftermath of the hurricane, UNIF students in Fondwa joined with other members of the community to cut trees away that had blocked roads, remove debris, and begin to rebuild homes.