By Joint Task Force-Haiti Public Affairs
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti – More than 700 soldiers from the 1st Battalion, 325th Airborne Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, will depart Haiti March 5-6 after completing their relief missions in support of communities impacted by a 7.0 earthquake Jan. 12.
The paratroopers arrived in Haiti Jan. 17 and operated principally in the densely populated Port-au-Prince metropolitan areas of Cite Soleil, Tabarre Commune and Croix de Bouquet Commune, where they provided much needed relief aid to local residents and manned two food distribution points.
In preparation for their redeployment to Fort Bragg, N.C., the unit transitioned its distribution points and security responsibilities to Brazilian and Jordanian battalion forces, who will continue to support international relief efforts in the area
During the deployment to Haiti, the paratrooper unit, also known as the Red Falcons, distributed more than 250,000 liters of water, 345,000 meals, 12,000 tarps for shelter, and treated, more than 7,000 patients. The unit also completed approximately 650 humanitarian missions.
“The Red Falcons along with their USAID and non-governmental organization (NGO) partners contributed immeasurably to the success of the mission here in Haiti,” said Lt. Gen Ken Keen, commander, Joint Task Force-Haiti. “They worked in one of the most challenging and difficult areas in the country and should be extremely proud of what they have accomplished and the Haitian lives they touched daily.”
The unit also supported several major humanitarian aid missions during more than 40 days in the country, including assisting the World Food Program with the distribution of more than 3.5 million rations to Haitian citizens. The unit’s medical personnel also treated earthquake survivors and other patients throughout the Port-au-Prince area.
Presently, numerous NGOs are conducting humanitarian assistance and disaster relief activities to assist area residents, including the Samaritans Purse, Good Neighbors, Glow Ministries and Baptist World Aid.
Many of the medical facilities in these communities are now managed by local physicians with support from NGOs. These facilities are also largely self-sufficient and not exceeding their capacity.