Children of Haiti follows three teenage orphans pre- and post-earthquake

Tonight at 10 p.m. ET, PBS’ Independent Lens airs Children of Haiti, a film that follows three orphaned teenage boys over a period of three years that ended after the earthquake (before that devastating natural disaster, which occurred one year ago tomorrow, the country had around more than a half million orphans). According to PBS’ web site for the documentary, Alexandria Hammond’s film “provides insight into Haiti’s ongoing abandoned youth problem. In the voices of the street boys themselves, the film examines a complicated issue that has plagued the country for decades and grows more severe by the day.”

They prove to be engaging and insightful narrators, even though some do or have sniffed paint thinner. Denick, who’s 14, says, “I want to show people all over the world how the children of Haiti live. Especially those who live on the streets.” In this clip, Denick points out people in the ocean and says, “The reason they swim in filth is because we don’t have anyone taking care of the country. Even the ones throwing the garbage into the sea, still have to bathe in filth.”

Watch the trailer:

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.