WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Pan American Development Foundation is preparing to procure and distribute emergency relief supplies to those affected by Hurricane Matthew in the Caribbean, particularly in Southern Haiti.
As many as five million Haitians are vulnerable to the impact of the devastating Category 4 Hurricane that made landfall on Tuesday. More than 600,000 people in Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Jamaica and Cuba are in emergency shelters, according to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). Half of them are in Haiti.
Some areas in southern Haiti and southwestern Dominican Republic received up to 40 inches of rain in less than 48 hours. Storm surges and hurricane-force winds have caused extensive property damage as well as life-threatening flash floods and mudslides.
“This hurricane is extremely powerful and has caused widespread damage,” says Nadia Cherrouk, Country Director of PADF Haiti. “Our staff is working to deliver urgently-needed supplies to people in isolated, coastal areas. Time is of the essence.”
In the days following the hurricane, thousands of people will need emergency relief supplies and access to clean water and sanitation in order to prevent the outbreak of bacterial diseases like cholera and water-borne illnesses. Logistics support, including transportation and the clearing of roadways, will also be an urgent priority. PADF plans to conduct a needs assessment as soon as conditions improve on the ground. This will inform both the emergency response for immediate priority needs and plans for medium- to long-term recovery.
The provision of relief supplies to Haiti is part of a first response phase. The Foundation plans to collaborate with its local partners and an extensive regional network that includes grassroots and community-based organizations in the affected areas.
“We’re looking to meet the most pressing needs of those affected by the hurricane,” says Liza Mantilla, Director of Disaster Management. “We will collaborate with our partners to plan a comprehensive response and recovery. Haiti will need our support long after the rain has stopped.”
PADF has been working in Haiti for more than 35 years. As the humanitarian arm of the Organization of American States (OAS), PADF responds to the region's major natural disasters and humanitarian crises throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. Learn more at www.padf.org/matthew.