We are a group of 12 on our way to Leogane this morning after meeting up in Port-au-Prince. We meet upwith the container today and begin fabricating tent poles of 75 Diamond Brand tents. These tents are designated for school houses.

Our group will also be involved in rebuilding of hospital Camejo and performing land surveys to idenetify areas to establish semi-permanent camps while rebuilding is underway.

We have the fantastic fortune of having a photojournalist traveling with us and already have hundreds of photos. We are so excited to be able to share these images nxt week.

Tonight at 5 or 5:30 check out Cover Haiti and Black Dome discussing Haiti, the tent drive and how it will effect the city of Leogane. Cover Haiti will be transitioning into Renewal 4 Haiti (www.renewal4haiti.org), a Denver based NGO for ongoing projects. Please look into their website for information about ongoing projects in Leogane.

Cover Haiti is sending tents and tarps to the coastal town of Leogane, Haiti, where 90% of their buildings and 40,000 (1/3 of the population) lives were lost in January’s earthquake. While Leogane was the worst effected demographic, they have not received as much international aide as other areas.

Cover Haiti’s affiliate in Denver, Renewal 4 Haiti (www.renewal4haiti.org)is led by Jodel Charles, a Haitian man whose parents are both physicians in Leogane. Through Jodel and his family, Cover Haiti is well connected with community leaders, including the Haitian Ambassador to the United States, Raymond Joseph. I will be having lunch with Mr. Joseph this Friday, in Denver, to discuss our support and efforts in Haiti.

The Cover Haiti shipment is much anticipated in Leogane and is being called “Manna from Heaven” by the people and Haitian Deputy of Philanthropic Organizations, Anthony Dumond. Through Cover Haiti’s support, we are sending housing for thousands of people and will inevitably be saving many, many lives by providing protection from the rainy season.

The container will be in Asheville, NC at Highland Brewing until Saturday, May 22nd. Please take this opportunity to donate a tent or tarp, or make a tax-deductible donation using the Paypal link today.

Manna From Heaven

Cover Haiti’s contact in Leogane, Deputy for Philanthropic Organizations has expressed the city of Leogane is in dire need of shelter and this container will be “manna from heaven”. You still have time to help out. Cover Haiti will be at this weekend’s French Broad Festival in Hotsprings, NC.You can still drop off a tent or tarp at Black Dome in Asheville, NC or simply make a contribution by clicking the Paypal link on the sidebar.

Lola and I successfully picked up 55 tents from fellow tent collector, orthopedic surgeon Dr. Dave. We left Asheville at 7:30 pm Sunday night and drove until about 1:00 am. After a few hours sleep at a lovely Virginia rest stop, we continued our trip North. The first few hours drive at dawn through Virginia were spectacular with Redbud trees in full bloom and bright green spring grass covering rolling hills. With the sun low in the east and early morning fog slowly lifting , Lola and I were really excited about the road trip.

We arrived at Dave’s house in Jersey about 3pm, and quickly loaded all 55 tents with the help of his 3-year old daughter, Sam. We made a quick turn around and were ready to leave by 3:45pm, hoping to dodge DC traffic. Getting in the car, I found Sam, squished up between the tents and center console, wanting “to go on the road trip with Lola too”!

After an evening in Annapolis, MD eating Sushi and catching up with an old raft guiding friend from Boone, NC, Lola and I were on the road again at 6am heading for Fayetteville, WV. What a spectacular drive we enjoyed on small winding roads, through the back woods and coal mining towns on WV. We rolled into Fayeteville at good friend Doug Proctor’s – and immediately put on the New River.

Doug and I spent a few hours paddling and telling stories. Doug, of the history of the New and Gauley Rivers. Me, of the tent collecting journey and how it all began.

Lola and I camped out on Doug’s front lawn, testing out one of the new tents from D. Dave. I am SO excited to deliver them to Haiti. The tent we borrowed is going to be someone’s new home.

Wednesday morning we hit the road again, on the way back to Asheville. We arrived at noon, 65 hours after we left, with shelter for over 200 people.

Lola, Navigator Extraordinaire

Lola and I are heading to Northern New Jersey to pick up 50 tents from Dr. Dave. Dave was one of the orthopedic sugeons from our medical relief trip to Haiti in January, 2010. Following the trip, Dave began his own fundraising efforts in Jersey. Shipping for 50 tents is well over a thousand dollars, so Lola and I are taking advantage of a few days off work to make a 1,500 mile tent reconnaissance.

Lola and George 1 hour into the road trip

She’s got short legs and can’t help drive, but swears to be the navigator. Check out her navigation skills from our last road trip to West Virginia.

Haiti Operating Room

Dave, orthopedic surgeon and member of our first post-earthquake trip to Haiti. Through Dave’s fundraising efforts in Jersey, a $15,000 check was used to purchase 120 new Kelty Grand Mesa-6 tents. The tents go into the 20 foot container at Highland Brewery in Asheville and will be sent to Leogane, Haiti at the end of April. These are one man’s efforts to help make change. You may not be able to perform an amputation by headlamp, but you can certainly contribute toward the purchase of a tent. To a homeless kid in Haiti, you have the ability to make a huge impact. Click our Paypal link on the sidebar to get involved.

Thursday, April 3 the Haitian government made a plea to the UN and the rest of the world to help, but allow Haitians to rebuild their own country.  What does this mean for Cover Haiti?

Through connections made while in Leogane this past January and February as well as relations with a Haitian led NGO in Denver, Co, Cover Haiti is well tied in to the Haitian Community.

A Haitian ground crew will receive and manage distribution of the tents and tarps. I will join to assist. The Cover Haiti shipment will be received under the umbrella of a Government-level NGO. The shipment has a tax-free non-profit status.

Please do not hesitate to voice any concerns or questions about Cover Haiti’s involvement with the community of Leogane and the steps being taken to ensure delivery of our container.

A big thanks to the folks over at Highland Brewing! Cover Haiti needed a loading dock for the freight container that is being filled with tents and sent to Port-au-Prince. Not only do they make great beer, they’ve allowed us to put the final piece of the logistical puzzle together. How about spending a hot spring day over at Highland, enjoying a cold one and dropping off a tent?

Kelty and Black Dome are working together to bring the Grand Mesa-6 tent to Cover Haiti at an unbelievable cost. Kelty is offering 20% off wholesale and Black Dome is paying for shipping costs. This means we can buy a $280 tent for just $125. Please use the PayPal link to make a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks to a generous $15,000 contribution from a surgeon on Cover Haiti’s medical trip in January/February, we have purchased 120 tents. Kelty has 2,500 available. Get direct a few friends to our blog and help us fill the 20-foot container that leaves Asheville this month!