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AmeriCares Provides Medical Relief to Darfur

  • October 25, 2004

Airlift of 36 Tons of Medicines Will Help Combat Treatable Diseases

Stamford, CT, October 25 2004 – AmeriCares is mobilizing its first airlift directly into Darfur, carrying 36 tons of medical relief supplies to help the Sudanese affected by what the United Nations is calling the worst humanitarian crisis of our time. Arriving in Darfur on October 26, this airlift is the first of five planned over the next year, as AmeriCares takes on the role of being a major provider of essential medicines for the entire Darfur region.

Working in partnership with Save the Children and the International Rescue Committee (IRC), and in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO), AmeriCares will distribute hundreds of thousands of life-saving treatments to health facilities and clinics throughout Darfur. The shipment also contains supplies to purify 3.4 million liters of water.

“The situation in Darfur is critical and of such a magnitude that it merits our utmost effort,” said AmeriCares President and CEO Curt Welling. “Nearly one million Sudanese in the Darfur region lack access to primary health care facilities, including the basic medicines necessary to treat preventable diseases. In organizing this airlift, AmeriCares is bringing medicines to combat malaria, cholera, respiratory infections, diarrhea and other illnesses to the people most at risk in this crisis.” Welling is accompanying the airlift to Darfur.

“Save the Children is delighted to be working in partnership with AmeriCares to bring much-needed medical supplies to children and families forced to flee from their homes in western Sudan due to ethnic violence,” said Charles MacCormack, President and CEO of Save the Children. “Over the past seven months, Save the Children has assisted 350,000 Sudanese, most of whom are women and children, in 44 temporary camps set up to assist displaced families, making us the largest distributor of humanitarian assistance in West Darfur.”

AmeriCares has been involved in the crisis in Sudan since earlier this year. To date, three previous airlifts totaling 60 tons of relief supplies have been sent to Chad, where nearly 200,000 displaced Sudanese are living in refugee camps on the border of Sudan. AmeriCares is working with the International Rescue Committee to deliver medical assistance to Kashuni Camp, home to nearly 19,000 refugees. Ongoing relief efforts there are focusing on treating malnourished children. AmeriCares has also provided antibiotics and malaria medications for other therapeutic feeding centers along the entire Chad/Sudan border, and provided water purification treatments for 10 million liters of water.

Earlier this year, AmeriCares launched a fund to aid the Sudanese people with the goal of raising $1 million by October 31, 2004. Concerned Americans have responded generously, and with more than $1.3 million contributed to date, the goal has been revised to $2 million.

To learn more about AmeriCares’ relief efforts in Sudan, or to make a contribution to support these efforts.