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New Canaan, CT, July 17 2003 – AmeriCares is preparing two air shipments of emergency aid for August delivery to southern Ethiopia in response to crop failures that have left 12.5 million people vulnerable to starvation.
The shipments follow three airlifts totaling 138 metric tons of corn/soy blend and four sea containers of pre-mixed nutritionals delivered to Ethiopia by AmeriCares since the start of the year.
AmeriCares is distributing the relief through 10 proposed feeding stations–each to provide sustenance for 2,500 people a day–and two therapeutic sites for children.
The two shipments under preparation consist of essential medicine and supplies, water purification systems, waterproof tents and scales to determine nutritional needs on a weight-to-height basis.
Dana Waesche of Norwalk, CT, the AmeriCares project manager for the Ethiopian mission, said: “Our assistance in the form of medicines, equipment and disaster supplies will allow the distribution of emergency relief and a thorough, organized monitoring of the population most at risk.”
Erratic weather patterns this year in Ethiopia have reduced agricultural production by eight to 15 percent and caused a devastating loss of livestock.
Food pledges from the international community are expected to avert a massive loss of life among the 69 million population. But pockets of malnutrition and disease persist, leaving significant need for medicine, shelter and feeding centers.
Since 1988, 1.2 million pounds of aid have been delivered to Ethiopia by AmeriCares, a Connecticut-based humanitarian aid and disaster relief organization that since 1982 has distributed more than $3 billion in aid to 137 countries.