BUILDING HOUSES THAT DON’T BLOW

By Aton Edwards, I.P.N. Executive Director

It’s been three weeks since my last post, and not without good reason.  I’ve been insanely busy developing the many different  mechanisms (funding, technical and, logistical) that the I.P.N. needed to put in place to create a large-scale geodesic domebuilding operation that can provide the Haitian earthquake survivors with geodesic shelters that can withstand the high winds, torrential rains and mudslides that come with the rapidly approaching rainy season.  

This will begin in less than six weeks, so there is literally no time to waste.  When the rain and wind comes, the makeshift shelters that hundreds of thousands live in today will be destroyed triggering another disaster & exacerbating a crisis that is already quite severe.  

The time to take action to minimize this tragedy from occurring is right now.  I say minimize, because at this point in time, it is physically impossible to provide safe shelter for all of Haiti’s homeless, but incredible things can be accomplished with the time we do have left.  It’s simply the right thing to do … as Americans & much more importantly, as human beings.    

Before I begin laying out the specifics of how to get involved– I need to address the following issues briefly.

I’ve been getting emails from many of you readers who believe that we’ve done enough for Haiti already! 

I take major issue with that sort of static — so, I’m gonna’ grit my teeth & give you an answer!

Please keep the following facts in mind.  Several of Haiti’s problems that existed before the earthquake have been made much worse over the past few weeks, specifically the containment of infectious diseases.    For example, Haiti has the highest rate of tuberculosis (TB) in the Americas.  

Many of the patients that were living in hospitals & sanatoriums destroyed by the quake are now living in the “tent cities” sleeping head-to-head in the densely packed communities.  Some will spread this disease to their neighbors.  In addition, they are no longer taking medication to control the disease because there is none available.  

The time to take action to minimize this tragedy from occurring is right now.  I say minimize, because at this point in time, it is physically impossible to provide safe shelter for all of Haiti’s homeless, but incredible things can be accomplished with the time we do have left.  It’s simply the right thing to do … as Americans & much more importantly, as human beings.    

Before I begin laying out the specifics of how to get involved– I need to address the following issues briefly.

I’ve been getting emails from many of you readers who believe that we’ve done enough for Haiti already! 

I take major issue with that sort of static — so, I’m gonna’ grit my teeth & give you an answer!

Please keep the following facts in mind.  Several of Haiti’s problems that existed before the earthquake have been made much worse over the past few weeks, specifically the containment of infectious diseases.    For example, Haiti has the highest rate of tuberculosis (TB) in the Americas.  

Many of the patients that were living in hospitals & sanatoriums destroyed by the quake are now living in the “tent cities” sleeping head-to-head in the densely packed communities. Some will spread this disease to their neighbors. In addition, they are no longer taking medication to control the disease because there is none available.

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This heightens the chance that a drug-resistant strain could develop. If it does, you can be certain it will eventually make its way into the U.S. Decent shelters & homes will provide the extraordinarily resilient Haitian people to not only protect themselves from the elements, but infectious diseases of the airborne (pneumonic) type and, even those spread by insects (malaria, dengue fever).

Continuity of treatment is the name-of-the-game and without it, this situation could rapidly grow beyond anyone’s ability to contain it.

So, providing shelter for the Haitian people will also help us here in the U.S. Not only as a protection against infectious diseases, but also as a means to help restore social & economic stability. The Haitian people are fiercely independent and look forward to the day they are self-reliant again.

Does that answer your questions directly enough? Good. I’d also like to answer the people who believe we are ignoring the ongoing situation in New Orleans & Mississippi. I say to you au contraire! It would be a crime to do all this for Haiti and ignore our fellow Americans that have literally been swept aside & forgotten about by the government.

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Once we get going full steam in Haiti we can use this same mechanism right here in the U.S.A. Not only in New Orleans & the Mississippi Gulf Coast but many other areas (the inner cities, Indian reservations, rural areas etc. So, no one is forgotten.

Now on to the business of the day — how you can help and get involved.

Americans have been extremely generous and to date have raised over a quarter billion dollars, perhaps over a half billion dollars! Where has most of it gone? Damned if I (or, many other people) know. Outside of a few dedicated independent groups, a great deal of it has been tied up in ridiculous labyrinthic bureaucratic “phantom-zones,” and the usual mix of confusion and corruption.

I’m determined that will not be the case with our program. Let me explain our “fail-safe” mechanisms:

~An Executive Oversight Committee has been formed to keep watch of all fundraising & resource collecting activities. No unofficial activity will be tolerated. To participate in this program, organizations, associations, clubs, corporations, groups & individuals must be officially registered with us. The complete list of our committee will be included in our next post.
~100% of all funds collected will be directed towards purchasing, shipping, transporting, and constructing domes (including the cost of labor at each site). Checks will be written to Pacific Domes and a few other companies that are gearing up their factories to produce the high volumes of domes needed. No checks or money will be accepted for any other purpose other than dome construction. Pacific Domes & World Shelters are already active on the ground and need funding now! Your donations are all tax deductible.
~All information regarding program details will be posted online. This includes a list of all participating organizations, associations, clubs, corporations, groups & individuals, the location, day, date and time of any fundraisers they hold, and the amount collected.

The first events are being organized now and, will be listed in the next post. Loud records recording artist Davina will headline at the NYC event. It will feature a number of popular musical artists, celebrities, prominent activists & politicians that support the program.

Renee Dawson, a Los Angeles based Musician/Songwriter/Producer is planning a Shelter For Haiti NOW! event on March 21.

The original Yippie! activist crew on Bleecker Street in NYC will stage a special Shelter For Haiti! event called Yipp!-Aid, also in early March. many of the most prominent activists and artists of the era will be present at the Yippie! Museum & Cafe to support the event for a all out geodome jam unlike anything that has ever been done! It will also be streamed out live on the internet!

More fundraising productions are being organized in NYC and across the nation!

You can too!

Contact us now and we’ll show you how.

Send your email to: shelter4haiti@readyforanything.org. Leave your name, title, or organization info or contact number and we’ll send you the info package. It will help you to structure your event, and register with our rapidly growing network of organizations, not-for-profits, activists and individuals who want to help us build as many domes as we can before the rainy season begins.

If you’d like to speak with me directly, email aton@readyforanything.org.

My next post will be this Thursday. It will feature detailed info regarding the upcoming events, the oversight committee, and other related details. Please stand by!

RFA!