Over the last 72-hours, many have contacted CulinaryCorps about whether we will be sending chef volunteers to Haiti.
The answer is yes! However, not as first responders in the months after the disaster.
Overseas emergency relief embodies many logistical challenges. We believe whole-heartedly in supporting the organizations that are able to mobilize skilled volunteers and materials quickly and efficiently to assist with first aid, housing, security and mass food distribution. Therefore, we encourage everyone to donate as little as $5 to organizations who have proven track record of successful disaster management: The Red Cross, Doctors Without Borders and Yele.org are all organizations we support. If you want to play a more active role, put your skills to use! Host a benefit at your restaurant, start a bake sale with fellow pastry chefs, auction your skills as a private chef…allow your strengths as cooks to shine through.
However, we also urge those who want to get involved to think about the long-term recovery of the nation. As our work in New Orleans has taught us, other organizations must be willing to help RECOVER, REBUILD and REVITALIZE a community hard-hit by disaster once the debris has been cleared.
This is where CulinaryCorps can engage.
Our efforts are best suited to pick-up where the emergency crews left off, and in doing so, fight “volunteer fatigue” that so often plagues monumental recovery efforts.
We are currently keeping a close watch on organizations and partnerships that would allow us to do what we do best: mobilize the skills of culinary professionals to help protect the health, well-being and foodways of a recovering community. While we have no dates set yet, if you would like to be put on a list of potential chef-volunteers interested in mobilizing to Haiti, please e-mail email@example.com.
In the meantime, our thoughts and blessings are with the heroic folks helping to make sense of the mayhem…and our hearts are with the people of Haiti and their families abroad.
In good food and good service,
Christine Carroll, Founding Director