Dear Editor, After our recent brush with Hurricane Omar, we can give thanks for our lucky escape; it could have been a lot worse.” Our neighbours in Haiti, however, were not spared in the slightest way this summer, they were pounded relentlessly with the rains from four hurricanes, flooding the country and leaving millions of people homeless and destitute. None of us here in the Federation, thank goodness, have known what it is like to sit on the roof of our former home, starving and thirsty, waiting in vain for help.” To say that Haiti is a poor country is a vast understatement.” Haiti is destitute.” Haiti is bankrupt.” Haiti is a country experiencing famine and disease.” Haiti is on our doorstep. What separates Haiti from us is the fact that Haiti declared independence in 1804.” Immediately the USA, France and Britain announced a trade embargo against this struggling independent country.” This was because Haiti had a successful slave rebellion that freed them from oppression and these countries did not want to be seen as supporting the end of slavery in Haiti. Ever since then, Haiti has battled with many problems including disease, poverty and dictators that have bled the country completely dry.” Haiti was just beginning to stand on its own two feet when the price of rice and other staple foods skyrocketed last year and brought them to their knees again. We can all remember the amazing Tempo launch concert held here in Nevis in 2006.” The headlining act at the concert was the very talented Haitian singer, Wyclef Jean. Wyclef was one of the lucky Haitians, his parents fled Haiti and gave him a new life and opportunities in a different country, most Haitians are not so lucky. Wyclef Jean has established an amazing charity for his fellow Haitians in the hope of giving back to the country of his fathers.” This charity www.yele.org is struggling, along with many Christian charities, to bring help to Haiti.” Please take a look at this Web site, there are many great videos and facts about Haiti, as well as some really good music.” As Wyclef Jean says on his Website, even a donation of ten dollars will help enormously to bring relief to this country, you can donate right on the website. These people are our neighbours, they are right here in the Caribbean, a fellow island of Caribbean people.” It’s the least we can do to reach into our hearts and our pockets to give them a hand, no matter how small we think that gift may be: it all helps.”” These people are starving; their children have no schools to go to, no hospitals to go to, and in many cases no homes to go to.” Please help them, we can all do it, and every little bit counts.” Please log on to www.yele.org and give. Thank you. Irene Macek Hamilton