Haiti

Irish Red Cross sends €25,000 in emergency aid to Haiti

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The Irish Red Cross has announced that it is sending an initial €25,000 in aid to Haiti from its Emergency Relief Fund to deal with the devastating earthquake which struck the country on Tuesday.

With the number of deaths, injured and homeless still rising, and the extent of the damage unknown, these funds will go towards dealing with the most immediate needs of the people of Haiti, such as search and rescue activities, relief distributions, emergency medical care, water and sanitation, and emergency shelter.

The Irish Red Cross also launched an emergency appeal for donations yesterday, calling on the Irish public to give what they can to help those most vulnerable. Further donations to the Red Cross on the ground in Haiti are expected in the coming days.

Donations to the emergency appeal can be made online at www.redcross.ie and by calling 1850 50 70 70.

Noel Wardick, Head of the International Department of the Irish Red Cross explained, "These funds, along with the donations from people in Ireland, will go directly towards assisting those with the greatest needs in the wake of this disaster, those who have been injured and who have lost their homes and loved ones."

Local members of the Haiti Red Cross are currently working to help the injured and support hospitals that are struggling with the scale of this disaster.

Meanwhile, the Irish Red Cross remains in close contact with its colleagues in Haiti and globally, with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) having deployed a Field Assessment and Coordination Team (FACT) to assess emergency and early recovery needs, including the restoration of livelihoods and permanent shelter. This team is composed of experts in logistics, emergency health, shelter, telecommunications, reporting and communication.

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has also set up a special website to help thousands of people within Haiti and abroad to restore contact with their loved ones who have been affected by the earthquake.

Background

The earthquake struck on Tuesday (12 Jan) at 12:00 local time, measuring 7.3 on the Richter scale shook the capital of Port-au-Prince and other areas of the country, with Haiti's West Province (pop. 2.2m) most affected.

Notes to Editor

The Irish Red Cross can provide spokesperson/s on the Haitian earthquake

Noel Wardick, Head of the International Department, Irish Red Cross. (Based in Ireland)

Paul Conneally, (Irish) Head of External Communications, IFRC is currently travelling to Haiti and will be available for interview upon arrival.

Declan O'Sullivan, Acting Secretary General, Irish Red Cross. (Based in Ireland)

How you can help

Donations are being accepted online at www.redcross.ie or by calling 1850 50 70 70.

Cheque and postal orders should be marked for the relevant appeal and made payable to:

Irish Red Cross,

16 Merrion Square,

Dublin 2.

For media enquiries please contact Pia Ward on 01 642 4612 or alternatively Aoife MacEoin on 087- 998 3788 to arrange an interview.

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