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On January 12, 2010, a 7.3 magnitude earthquake struck Haiti ten miles from the capital, Port-au- Prince. Already the poorest country in the western hemisphere with 76% of the population living on less than $2 per day, Haiti could ill afford this blow to its fragile development. Rapid deforestation, a growing population, increasing unemployment, corruption, food price crises, weak infrastructure, gender violence, a history of natural disasters and many years of political instability had all contributed to a precarious existence for most of Haiti’s population.

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