Actor-director Sean Penn gestures as he participates in a discussion at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government in Cambridge, Mass. Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2013 regarding Haiti in the wake of a devastating earthquake three years ago. Penn is the co-founder of the J/P Haitian [auth] Relief Organization. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (AP) — Sean Penn remembers smelling dead bodies when he arrived in Haiti after the earthquake.
But the Academy Award-winning actor says there’s now music in those same streets even as the country faces many years of rebuilding.
Penn says “extraordinary” changes have happened since the January 2010 natural disaster killed more than 300,000 people and left about 1.5 million homeless.
He spoke Tuesday at a forum at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.
The actor is an ambassador-at-large for Haiti’s president and CEO of an aid group.
It started with a goal of bringing painkillers to victims and became an agency that manages a camp for displaced people and works to resettle them.
Former Haitian Prime Minister Michele Pierre-Louis and Army official Ken Keen joined Penn as panelists.