Saturday, September 6, 2008

A Look At Aid Efforts In Haiti

International aid groups providing relief to Haiti following Hurricane Hanna say donating money, rather than material goods, is the best way to help. Details here:


U.N. World Food Program sent ship with 33 tons of relief supplies to Gonaives. Setting up a distribution center. U.N. peacekeeping mission plans to bring in more U.N. personnel on helicopters to hand out bottled water, 36,000 water-purification tablets, 16 metric tons of high-energy biscuits and two metric tons of rice, along with cooking oil and other supplies.



A U.S. plane from Miami delivered $250,000 in relief supplies, enough for 20,000 people to Port-au-Prince, much of it brought to Gonaives by a U.S. Coast Guard cutter and two helicopters for distribution Friday. These shipments include health kits, plastic sheeting and water jugs. Another $100,000 will buy bedding, kitchen items and other goods for victims, the U.S. Embassy said. The U.S. Southern Command has diverted the USS Kearsarge to Haiti to assist with relief efforts. The ship has four operating rooms, 13 intensive-care unit beds, 40 medical ward beds and a blood bank.



The Pan American Development Foundation, the OAS disaster relief arm, has offices in Gonaives and throughout Haiti and was among the first responders. Works with U.S. government and corporations on medical relief and reconstruction. Enlisted Federal Express to fly in a "shelter package" donated by Citigroup with enough nonperishable goods and equipment to support 480 people.



Giving Haiti $2.85 million to help victims of tropical storm Hanna pay for food, clean water, shelter, basic household equipment and medical care. Also made a grant this week to Caribbean nations to help people made homeless by Hurricane Gustav.



Dispatching 500 family kits to Jacmel, 300 to Les Cayes and another 200 kits from a warehouse in Haiti to other affected areas. Distributed 5,000 meals provided by Haitian government to people outside Gonaives. Assessing the situation. Hoping to provide 10,000 families with kits for hygiene, cooking and cleaning, and mosquito nets, along with building materials to repair roofs and provide temporary shelter for 3,000 families. Launched an appeal for $3.4 million.



First convoy of off-road vehicles reached Gonaives Friday with safe water and emergency food supplies including high-energy biscuits, reinforcing local staff that was flooded out of its offices. Plans larger convoys with water purification systems, food, and other supplies once road conditions improve.



Driving trucks carrying 18 tons of food and water to the Gonaives bishop's house, where 500 flood victims have gathered. Some 2,000 relief kits also were helicoptered there Friday. Working to transport patients evacuated from flooded hospital to other medical facilities.



Providing 500 nonfood item kits and 1,000 5-gallon bottles of drinking water to families in Gonaives this weekend.



Launched rapid assessment of areas in the central plateau, such as Maissad, to determine how best to help.



Meeting with the U.N. to determine how best to help, reinforcing local staff in Gonaives with outside experts.

Source: AP.Org - International Herald Tribune

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