Friday, May 14, 2010

Donations Meeting More than Immediate Needs in Haiti

As Project HOPE volunteers continue to work with amputees at Hôpital Albert Schweitzer and other facilities in Haiti, HOPE also continues to send vital medicines and medical supplies into the country. In addition to the $35 million of critically needed medical donations already delivered to Haiti, Colin Credle, HOPE’s Regional Humanitarian Assistance GIK Manager, recently reported on a donation that is doing even more than protecting families from common disease.
Last month Vestergaard-Frandsen gave HOPE a supply of LifeStraw®, which can purify up to 700 liters of water, and ZeroFly®, chemically treated mosquito tarps, to distribute in Haiti.

Working with another NGO, GrassRoots United, HOPE distributed the LifeStraw and ZeroFly tarps through organized Tent City committees. These Tent City committees are comprised of groups of people, who actually live in the camps, who are elected to present their needs to NGOs and distribute supplies to their fellow residents.

“The LifeStraw water purifier and ZeroFly tarps have not only help protect families against common water-borne disease and mosquitoes, they are helping to build healthier, better organized communities,” Colin said. “By providing these newly elected committees with the LifeStraw and ZeroFly tarps, we found that these committees were able to gain more authority in their communities and therefore they were better able to distribute the resources and train their fellow residents on how to use them properly,” Colin said.

As a follow-up to the donation, Colin and a representative from Vestergaard visited some of the Tent Cities.

“We spoke with Tent City residents who were very happy with their Lifestraws and we also saw the bright green and white ZeroFly tarps in proper use,” Colin added. “The donation itself was important to the health of those in the tent communities, but being able to leverage the donation to provide more stability in the communities and insure proper use of the donation through the newly elected Tent City committee members is very exciting,” Colin added.

Help support Project HOPE's long-term efforts to help the people of Haiti.

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