A Little Perspective... Haiti

by Janet

Recently we’ve all been watching in horror the devastation and human suffering accompanying the magnitude 7.0 earthquake in Haiti.  How many of us, though, realize how the people of Haiti, and so many of the people in the world, live on a daily basis?

How would you complete the following sentence: 

If you have a bed to sleep on, food in your refrigerator and a roof over your head, you are among the richest ______ percent of the world’s population. 

If you’d like to know the answer, as well as many other interesting facts about our standing in the world, watch this video compiled with the aid of statistics from the United Nations and PBS.  Pretty amazing...


I have a book I love to share with my World Geography students entitled The Material World:  A Global Family Portrait by Peter Menzel.  In this book photographer Menzel asked a statistically average family in several countries around the world to put their possessions out in front of their homes and pose for a picture.  The results are amazing, making this book, and the information it also contains, hard to put down.

At the top of the post is a picture of the average family in Haiti at the time The Material World was published.  While conditions may have improved a little, they haven’t by all that much.  The average income in Haiti is still $270 (US) per year.

I don’t know about you, but looking at this information makes me stop and think. 
If you are interested in doing something to help the relief efforts in Haiti, “US News and World Report” recently published a list of ten ways.
Material World Posters available here

1 comment:

mikellcs said...

I am fascinated by this book and these statistics. How humbling.


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