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Red Cross Continuing to Push Aid to Haiti Amid Difficult Conditions
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NHQ
 
January 15, 2010

The aftermath of Tuesday’s earthquake has posed logistical challenges for all humanitarian organizations, including Red Cross responders, who are working around the clock to meet the challenges and ensure aid reaches the survivors.

The difficulties include damaged transportation and power systems; an unreliable airport tower, which had led to many flights being diverted; and damaged cranes at the capital city’s port, which is not expected to reopen until January 18. Some roads are also covered with debris, making travel within the capital city difficult.

Despite these challenges, the American Red Cross has dozens of disaster specialists in Haiti, assessing the damage, addressing urgent needs and establishing the foundation for a long-term recovery operation. These individuals joined the 15-person staff who were already in country, and 12 Red Cross teams from other countries who arrived on Thursday. Among these teams are engineers, surgeons and family linking specialists. These teams will establish field hospitals, restore water and sanitation systems, distribute supplies and restore family links facilities.

Two planes carrying Red Cross humanitarian assistance are due to land Friday afternoon in Port-au-Prince. The first carries a field hospital, and the second carries tarps, blankets, hygiene items, buckets, shelter supplies and kitchen sets.

The American Red Cross is also working today with airport authorities to transport additional items from its warehouse in Panama into Port-au-Prince.

An Outpouring of Support
The American Red Cross and other relief organizations have seen an incredible outpouring of support in response to the Haiti earthquake.

So far, the American Red Cross has received $37 million in donations, breaking records for pledges to the Red Cross made within the same time period after a disaster. More than half of the donations have been through online contributions, with strong support from corporations and record-setting activity in mobile giving.

First Lady Michelle Obama also released a Public Service Announcement asking people to join her in supporting the Red Cross relief efforts in Haiti:

“The images from Haiti are heart-breaking—homes, hospitals and schools destroyed; families searching for loved ones; parents trying to feed their children. But we can all do something. We can help the American Red Cross as it delivers the food, water and medicine that can save lives. Donate $10 by texting “HAITI” to 9-0-9-9-9. Visit redcross.org or call 1-800-RED-CROSS. Thanks for your help.”

How to Help
While the American Red Cross appreciates heartfelt offers to travel to Haiti or to donate household items, at this time, what the Red Cross needs the most are financial contributions – whether by check, online or by phone.

You can make a donation to the American Red Cross International Response Fund at www.redcross.org or by calling 1-800-RED-CROSS. Donors can designate their gifts to Haiti relief. You can also donate $10 to Haiti relief by texting “HAITI” to 90999.

How to Help
  • We are not accepting volunteers to travel to Haiti. If you would like to volunteer for the American Red Cross, please contact your local chapter.
  • Persons in Haiti and abroad can search for and register the names of relatives missing since the earthquake at www.icrc.org/familylinks. The International Committee of the Red Cross is helping to reconnect separated families within the country.
  • People trying to locate U.S. citizens living or traveling in Haiti should contact the U.S. Department of State, Office of Overseas Citizens Services, at 1-888-407-4747 or (202) 647-5225.
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Residents living outdoors
Thousands of people have lost their homes when a 7.3 magnitude earthquake struck Haiti on 12 January 2019. This photo was taken on 14 January 2019 and shows people that have spent the night out doors, either because they lost their homes or because they are afraid of aftershocks which might destroy their houses.

Please also consider supporting your community’s needs by volunteering with your local Red Cross; some chapters are in need of local volunteers to staff call centers and other activities in support of this response.  

How to Get Help
The International Committee of the Red Cross is helping to reconnect separated families within the country. They have established a special Web site, enabling persons in Haiti and abroad to search for and register the names of relatives missing since the earthquake: www.icrc.org/familylinks.

If you’re trying to reach a U.S. citizen living or traveling in Haiti, you should contact the U.S. Department of State, Office of Overseas Citizens Services, at 1-888-407-4747.

You can help the victims of countless crises, like the recent earthquake in Haiti, around the world each year by making a financial gift to the American Red Cross International Response Fund, which will provide immediate relief and long-term support through supplies, technical assistance and other support to help those in need. The American Red Cross honors donor intent. If you wish to designate your donation to a specific disaster, please do so at the time of your donation by mailing your donation with the designation to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, D.C. 20013 or to your local American Red Cross chapter. Donations to the International Response Fund can be made by phone at 1-800-REDCROSS or 1-800-257-7575 (Spanish) or online at www.redcross.org

You can help the victims of countless crises around the world each year by making a financial gift to the American Red Cross International Response Fund, which will provide immediate relief and long-term support through supplies, technical assistance and other support to help those in need. Donations to the International Response Fund can be sent to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, D.C. 20013 or made by phone at 1-800-REDCROSS or 1-800-257-7575 (Spanish) or online at www.redcross.org.


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