An Oklahoma City man said he was fortunate to survive Haiti’s deadly earthquake this week when so many others in the impoverished nation did not. Humphreys Munai, an employee of the nonprofit organization World Neighbors, returned to Oklahoma City on Thursday afternoon after a 48-hour ordeal to escape the devastated country. He said he likely is alive because he was not at his hotel when the massive quake struck, but at a hospital built to withstand natural disasters. "We could see the buildings going down and the dust rising up. We walked back to the hotel, and it was gone,” Munai said after reuniting with his family at Will Rogers World Airport. Conditions in Haiti are horrendous and worsening because of lack of medical aid, food and water, he said. "It is terrible,” he said. "There are bodies all over the place.” Munai and another World Neighbors employee from Guatemala were able to leave the country by driving hours on treacherous roads to the Dominican Republic, where they talked their way across the border. They were able to fly out of an airport there. Munai arrived in Oklahoma City to a gathering of family, friends and co-workers. His wife, Judith, shrieked "There he is, there he is!” as he exited the terminal. They embraced for a long moment, tears streaming down their faces. Munai, a native of Kenya, is international finance coordinator for Oklahoma City-based World Neighbors. He and his wife have a 5-year-old daughter and 19-month-old son, who also were at the airport. Munai said two Haitians who work for World Neighbors are missing, and it’s unclear whether offices in Port-au-Prince are damaged. Most of the nonprofit’s program areas are in rural areas outside the city, but they also will suffer from the devastation. World Neighbors President Melanie Macdonald said rural communities depend on supplies from the capital city, but many roads now are closed. Rural communities also may grow as urbanites flee the destruction of Port-au-Prince. About 57,000 Haitians participate in World Neighbors programs in agriculture, literacy, health and environmental protection.
Charity seeks staffOklahoma City-based Feed The Children is planning to send a military transport plane with 800 food boxes and about 400 tents from Chicago to Port-au-Prince today or Saturday, officials said. Spokesman Tony Sellars said the group doesn’t know whether a Feed The Children medical clinic was damaged or whether all Haitian staff members have been located.
How to help Donations can be made to World Neighbors at www.wn.org or mailed to 4127 NW 122, Oklahoma City, OK 73120.