On January 12, 2010 Haiti’s capital city, Port-au-Prince, was flattened by a magnitude 7.3 earthquake. The wave of untold destruction lasted for 54 never-ending seconds, the ramifications are still being felt today. First, the numbers: the disaster killed a shocking 220,000 people. An additional 300,000 people were injured. And finally, half a million residents were suddenly made homeless.

But now, five years later, it’s time to look again at where the country stands. In many ways, the Caribbean island is still in a perilous state: 250,000 people still have no homes, only a tiny fraction of hospitals and schools have been rebuilt and the cholera epidemic, which erupted in the months following the earthquake, has not subsided.

There is, however, another Haiti: one of stories of individuals and daily acts of heroism impregnated with hope. Some of the international media have reported on these optimistic notes in a piecemeal manner. This project aims to contribute to that other, more positive narrative.

The photographs above gather together and tell the stories of encouraging, singular experiences. In sum, they demonstrate how the rebirth of a nation and hope in the future begin with the involvement of each and every individual.

—Daniele Bellocchio

Editor’s Note: Marco Gualazini’s photographs were shown at the Angkor Photography Festival and Workshops, which ran from December 5 to December 12, 2015 in Siem Reap, Cambodia.