South Florida help is on its way for struggling Haitian deportees

As Haitians struggle with Dominican's new rules, Food for The Poor sends help


COCONUT CREEK, Fla. – Help is on its way. Boxes of food, clothes, towels, sheets, pillows, mattresses, medical supplies, cleaning products and more were packed in boxes and placed in shipping containers in Coconut Creek. 

Three shipping container trucks left the nonprofit organization's headquarters in Coconut Creek Thursday on their way to a Haitian port. Food For The Poor's executive director Angel Aloma traveled to Haiti to help coordinate the distribution.

Food for The Poor President Robin Mahfood was overseeing the dispatch. He said the aid was in response to the influx of people that the Dominican Republic was forcing into Haiti due to a new immigration policy. 

"A lot of children especially are being displaced," Mahfood said. "They are walking over, walking over into Haiti without anything, no clothes, no money, no housing, no water."

Mahfood and Food For The Poor, one of the largest charities in the country, are survivors. In 2000, there was a sex and financial scandal related to some alleged purchases involving Mahfood's relatives. The organization was able to resurface and focus on sending help to Haiti, after the earthquake. 

During 2014, the organization spent about $913 million and about $40 million were on operational expenses, according to the organization's financial reports.  In sum, they estimate having sent about $266 million in aid to Haiti last year.

Among their many operations in Haiti, was their feeding center in Port-au-Prince, which they claim to provides 15,000 meals and is open six days a week. They also ran an animal husbandry project and shipped 154 tractor-trailer loads to Haiti last year, their report said.

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