WASHINGTON, Monday, January 18, 2010 - Outside the damaged American Red Cross office in Croix Deprez, volunteers from Haiti and around the world are working side-by-side to clean and stitch wounds amidst the earthquake's rubble. Outreach teams are also traveling through the neighborhood camps today, providing basic relief items, such as tarps, blankets, jerry cans for water and hygiene supplies.
"Groups of Haitian Red Cross youth volunteers will comb the worst-hit neighborhoods, street by street, promoting safe hygiene practices and encouraging people to come to the first aid posts," said Winnie Romeril, a volunteer with the American Red Cross in Haiti.
American Red Cross President & CEO Gail McGovern is in the Dominican Republic, meeting with other Red Cross and government leaders today to help coordinate a global response to unprecedented need in Haiti. On Tuesday, she will travel to Haiti to visit American Red Cross relief distribution points.
President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama visited American Red Cross workers this afternoon in the disaster operations center at Red Cross headquarters in Washington, D.C.
The President showed gratitude to the employees and volunteers, and said, "tip-top operation, thank you and keep it up; you make us very proud."
Over the weekend, planes and trucks carrying Red Cross humanitarian assistance arrived in the region, delivering a field hospital and much needed materials such as tarps, blankets, hygiene items, buckets, shelter supplies and kitchen sets. Three additional shipments of relief items should arrive on Monday and Tuesday in the Dominican Republic before being trucked into Haiti.
Red Cross teams from around the world spent the weekend coordinating and delivering clean drinking water to survivors gathering in six different communities as well as hospitals and makeshift medical facilities.
In the days ahead, the Red Cross will begin to provide supplies for temporary shelters in Haiti. Kits, containing tarps, rope and tools, as well as tents and blankets, will be made available for an initial 20,000 families.
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
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation's blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization - not a government agency - and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit www.redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.
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