Hurricane Matthew struck Haiti on 4 October 2016, the most powerful hurricane to hit the country in more than 50 years.
Bringing forceful 230km/h winds and torrential rain, Matthew devastated what already stood as one of the poorest countries in the world: more than 1.4 million people were left in urgent need of humanitarian aid in its wake.
The people of Haiti found themselves displaced and exposed to the serious threats of cholera and starvation through severe water contamination and chronic food shortages. When the hurricane struck, our team was on the island of Île à Vache, where many of our programmes are based. Lying right in the eye of the storm, the island was adversely affected in its brute force.
Moving swiftly into emergency response, we focused on delivering vital food aid, water and emergency shelter to some of the most critically affected communities.
Working closely with the Protection Civile on Île à Vache, and using our Christine Farm as a distribution centre for the Cavaillon Valley, we reached thousands of families to ensure their health and security after this major natural disaster.
We also conducted house-to-house visits across Île à Vache and in the communities we support, assessing the full extent of the damage and facilitating medical treatment for those who needed it. This swift and effective response laid the foundations for a strong return when we moved into recovery mode in late November 2016.
From then, our focus shifted to restarting our programmes and supporting the people of Haiti to rebuild their lives once more.