Stamford, Conn., Jan. 12, 2012 – Two years after the devastating Haiti earthquake, AmeriCares has delivered $54 million in aid for survivors, including medicines and supplies to fight the recent cholera epidemic. To date, AmeriCares has completed 950 aid shipments to more than 100 hospitals and health clinics throughout Haiti.
Today, on the second anniversary of the disaster, AmeriCares is publishing a “Haiti Earthquake Two-Year Special Report” on its relief efforts in the small island nation – the poorest in the Western Hemisphere. The report can be found here www.americares.org/haiti2yrreport.
“Two years after one of the worst urban disasters in history, more than 500,000 Haitians are still living under tarps and plywood, with dismal sanitation and limited access to clean water,” said AmeriCares President and CEO Curt Welling. “With so many survivors crowded together in squalid conditions, Haiti’s health crisis today deserves as much attention as the initial disaster. Nearly 7,000 lives have already been lost to the cholera epidemic and thousands more are at stake.”
AmeriCares has been delivering aid to Haiti since 1984 and opened an office and warehouse in Port-au-Prince after a massive outpouring of support from donors following the January 12, 2010 earthquake. Today, AmeriCares sends over 300 aid shipments a year to Haiti – an average of one shipment a day – to health care facilities throughout the country.
Now, as AmeriCares enters its third year of relief operations, much of the focus is on supplying cholera treatment centers that offer the only chance for survival for those infected. Contracting the deadly disease is almost inevitable for families still living in temporary settlements because cholera spreads rapidly through contaminated water. Pre-positioning treatment supplies, including IV fluids, is a top priority for AmeriCares Haiti relief workers since the most seriously ill patients can die of dehydration in as little as 10 to 12 hours.
AmeriCares has provided medical relief and humanitarian assistance to millions affected by natural disasters and man-made crises around the world for nearly 30 years. Our emergency response work includes the 2004 tsunami in Southeast Asia, the 2010 Chile earthquake and last year’s earthquake and tsunami in Japan. Our relief efforts often last years beyond the initial disaster as we rebuild hospitals and clinics and restore health services.