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Port Au Prince, Haiti

Port Au Prince is the capital of Haiti, which is the poorest country in the Americas. The country shares the island of HispaƱola with the Dominican Republic, which again lays in the middle of Puerto Rico and Cuba.

Having been struck by a heavy earthquake, the city is still a mess and the government does not seem to be doing much about it. The whole city is like a garbage dump and everywhere I looked I saw people trowing trash and peeing right on the streets.

A way of telling how poor the country is, is by seeing how many people they squeeze into buses and taxis. Here they used somethinf called “jub jubs” which were converted pickup trucks.l, and both these and the buses were packed but also decorated as much as physically possible.

My days here I was couchsurfing at a house in the city center which did not have electricity or running water. There were around ten people staying in the house, but the only one having a job was the father who was a jub jub driver- each day renting a jub jub to hope he would cover the cost of the rent by picking up passengers who each paid 10 Haitian Gourde per ride, which is 15 US dollar cents.

Port Au Prince really felt poor and spending a couple of days walking around the city I did not see much more than a couple of parks, churches and markets, but it really gave me a feeling of being back in French West Africa. If anyone wants to help out, get in touch with me and I can hook you up with some of the contacts I made who I know would make sure that clothes, pencils and books would come to good use in Haiti.

The local TV shop by the central plaza