04 Nov 2016

AN East Lancashire charity has sent response teams to Haiti to offer support and aid after the recent hurricane damage. Al-Imdaad Foundation members flew out to the Caribbean country after Hurricane Matthew caused widespread devastation damaging homes and communities and claiming around 1,000 lives.

The category four storm hit Haiti with 145mph winds and torrential rains and was the most powerful storm to affect the island in more than 50 years. Al-Imdaad Foundation teams responded with emergency aid and are being led by projects coordinator Zubair Valimulla. He said: “Our teams have been on the ground assisting thousands of families in Jérémie with food aid and water purification tablets. “We are now seriously concerned about an epidemic of cholera, and that’s why the Ministry of Health with our assistance is taking all measures possible to avoid that happening.” Haiti is one of the world’s poorest countries and is only just starting to recover from the earthquake which hit the country in 2010. Many homes are made from flimsy materials that can’t withstand extreme weather, such as the hurricanes. The level of damage is not yet known, as some parts of the country are totally cut off, with no means of communication, but initial reports suggest that at least 350,000 people have been affected by the hurricane. An estimated 90 per cent of buildings have been levelled in the south of the country. According to the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) situation report on Wednesday, 510 suspected cholera cases have been reported in Haiti following Hurricane Matthew. Meanwhile, the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) said in a statement that ‘unofficial field sources indicate that some 477 suspected cholera cases were reported in the Southern Peninsula in the last four days’. The Al-Imdaad Foundation, established in 2003, is based in Audley Range and looks to provide humanitarian services in crisis and non-crisis situations throughout the world. The project works in more than 65 countries across Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas and aims to help the poor and deprived overcome suffering. Recent work of the charity includes providing resources in Gaza last year, and they have been looking at sending over further aid to the area in recent months. To donate a food parcel to Haiti with water purification tablets it costs only £30 which consists of rice bags, pasta cases, cooking oil, sugar, tuna, milk, tomato paste and beans visit (COurtesy of Lancashire Telegraph)
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