By Danielle Andreani,
Natural disasters leave heartache and destruction in their wake; millions of dollars in damage occur and too many lives are lost. The world has been hit with numerous natural disasters in the past several years: earthquakes, typhoons, hurricanes, and even tornados. While the horror of these incidents is evident, there is a glimmer of light that occurs as well. Natural disasters have a way of uniting people across regions, states, and even countries.
After tragedy strikes, people from all over begin to look for ways to help; whether it is donating clothes, giving money, or even letting people use their electricity when most of the region is without. Natural disasters cause people to come together and help rebuild what was lost. While bringing destruction, natural disasters also bring hope.
According to the National Hurricane Center, Hurricane Sandy was the second-costliest tropical cyclone to have ever hit the United States with over $75 billion in damages. After the hurricane was over, over $400 million was raised over the following months. This doesn’t include the hundreds of drives for clothing and food where donations poured in from all over the nation. It was through the generosity of others that the affected area was able to regain a semblance of normalcy so quickly. Restoration efforts began immediately with thousands of volunteers reporting to the Red Cross alone. In addition, nine months after the storm, there was a surge of babies born in New Jersey, giving many families even more hope for the future.
Another positive of natural disasters is shedding light of current situations in other countries. In 2010, Haiti was hit with an earthquake with a magnitude of 7.0. As countries responded by pledging funds and rescue teams, the true status of Haiti began to emerge. Ranked as the poorest country in the world by World Bank, the earthquake brought further attention to the living conditions and lifestyles in Haiti. Due to the widespread coverage of the poverty in Haiti and how it was aggravated by the earthquake’s debilitating effects, organizations have taken a larger role in helping to fight against poverty in Haiti by supplying medical assistance, education for the children, and food distribution programs.
Though natural disasters bring almost unimaginable devastation to its victims, they also bring hope. Though Haiti faced so much destruction, the earthquake also brought more attention than ever. Hurricane Sandy showed that people do care about their neighbors, even the cranky one that gets mad about everything. As long as society shows compassion for others, there will still be hope following any disaster.
A version of this article appeared in the Tuesday, Nov. 26 print edition.
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