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Haiti Red Cross relief efforts continue in areas hardest hit by Hurricane Matthew

by IFRC | International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC)
Wednesday, 26 October 2016 20:46 GMT

* Any views expressed in this article are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters Foundation.

Port-au-Prince, 26 October 2016 – Today 300 families received relief items such as hygiene kits, kitchen sets, buckets, mosquito nets, jerry cans and tarpaulins from the Haiti Red Cross Society in Anse D’Hainault, one of the remote areas of the country severely affected by Hurricane Matthew.

“Anse D’Hainault is the longest distance west of the country from the capital city of Port-au-Prince,” explained Omar Robinson, Head of Operations for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC).

To reach Anse D’Hainault by road, Red Cross staff and volunteers would have to pass through the mountains on narrow roads, where there is a high risk of landslides due to the heavy rainfall. When roads are blocked, it makes it an even greater challenge to get aid to communities in serious need of help.

This first shipment of aid to reach Anse D’Hainault arrived by boat on 16 October, through the coordination between Haiti Red Cross Society, IFRC, the Haitian authorities, and other partners including the Dutch Navy. Yesterday was the second and final shipment of goods, totaling the support provided by the Red Cross in the area to 600 families.

“We are doing our best to find solutions to the many logistical challenges we are facing,” said Robinson. “The Red Cross has now reached more than 3,500 families since the storm struck, but the needs remain immense across the country.”

“Our priorities moving forward include delivering relief in the hard-to-reach-areas, and stopping cholera and other diseases through wash, sanitation, hygiene, prevention and treatment,” said Robinson. “But if the rain continues, it will only make things even more difficult.”

From before Hurricane Matthew hit through the days of devastation that have followed to the months and years to come, Haiti Red Cross Society volunteers and staff have been part of local communities supporting people, providing relief and helping them overcome the challenges ahead.

The IFRC has launched an appeal for 6.8 million Swiss francs (6.9 million US dollars) to provide medical, shelter, water and sanitation assistance to 50,000 people in the storm-ravaged southwest of Haiti. Donations can be made here to support the Haiti Red Cross Society emergency response.

Video footage of the logistics operation are available here. An infographic on relief items sent to Haiti is available here. Donations can be made here to support the Haiti Red Cross Society response to Hurricane Matthew.

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