Stamford, Conn. – Feb. 19, 2021 – Americares is preparing emergency shipments of bottled water, medicine and relief supplies for Texas families and local health centers affected by the severe winter weather that has wreaked havoc across the state.
Days of snow, ice and freezing temperatures knocked out power—36 hours or longer in many homes—and caused pipes to freeze, leaving millions of Texans without heat or access to safe drinking water. More than 180,000 people were still without power as of early this afternoon, and nearly 12 million were instructed to boil tap water, or stop using it entirely, as pipes and water mains burst in the frigid temperatures. Texas Governor Greg Abbott declared a state of emergency for all 254 counties in Texas and President Joe Biden approved a federal emergency declaration on Sunday.
Americares, a health-focused relief and development organization, is readying truckloads of bottled water, life-saving medicines, PPE and other essential relief items to send to partner clinics and professional response organizations in affected communities. Americares has offered assistance to 110 partner health facilities serving low-income, uninsured patients throughout the state and is coordinating its response with Feeding America, The Salvation Army, the National Association of Free and Charitable Clinics, the Texas Association of Free and Charitable Clinics and other local and national response organizations.
“The most urgent need right now is safe drinking water, so that is a high priority,” said Americares Director of Emergency Response Brian Scheel. “We are also getting requests for insulin for diabetic patients and PPE to protect against COVID-19. We are working closely with partner organizations to ensure families have the medicine and supplies they need to stay healthy during this very difficult time.”
Americares is preparing shipments for clinics in Arlington, Bandera, Corpus Christi, Dallas, Richland Hills and Waxahachie.
Americares has professional relief workers ready to respond to disasters at a moment’s notice and stocks emergency medicine and supplies in warehouses in the U.S., Europe and India that can be delivered quickly in times of crisis.
The organization responds to approximately 30 natural disasters and humanitarian crises worldwide each year, establishes long-term recovery projects and brings disaster preparedness programs to vulnerable communities. Since its founding more than 40 years ago, Americares has provided more than $19 billion in aid to 164 countries, including the United States.
Donations to Americares U.S. Disaster Relief Fund will support its response to the Texas cold weather crisis. To make a donation, please go to www.americares.org/usdisasterfund