By  on January 10, 2012

There are about 19.7 million people on the island of Hispaniola that is divided into the Dominican Republic and Haiti. The Dominican Republic takes up about two-thirds of the land space that is more rich and fertile than it’s more mountainous Western neighbor. With less inhabitable land, Haiti — with an area of 10,714 square miles, slightly smaller than the state of Maryland — is naturally more densely populated.

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Haiti is located between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, about 700 miles from Miami. It has ports in Cap-Haitien, Gonaives, Jacmel and the capital, Port-au-Prince.

With such a mountainous landscape, many of the homes in Haiti are built on top of each other, “so when the earth shook, these cinder block homes fell,” said Rick Helfenbein, president of Luen Thai USA.

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