Uruguay received a donation from the Organization of American States (OAS) to help ease the effects of recent widespread flooding that have displaced some 12,000 people and affected more than 100,000 in that country.
During a brief ceremony today at OAS headquarters, Assistant Secretary General Albert R. Ramdin presented the $15,000 contribution-from the Inter-American Emergency Aid Fund (FONDEM) -to the Permanent Representative of Uruguay, Ambassador Maria del Lujan Flores. Speaking on behalf of the 34 member countries, Ramdin expressed his solidarity through what he said was a "symbolic contribution" for the people of Uruguay.
He also called on all member states that have not done so to support Uruguay during its time of need and asked for continued financial contributions to the Emergency Aid Fund. "Without this fund we are not able to provide our support," he said, underscoring the important role it plays throughout the region during unexpected catastrophes.
Ambassador Flores said her country had not experienced "a calamity" like this one for more than 50 years and expressed her government's appreciation for the contribution. "It is important not only for what it means substantially but also because it reflects the collaboration, assistance and solidarity of the Organization toward the Uruguayan people," noted Ambassador Flores.
Others present during the ceremony included the Chair of the OAS Permanent Council, Ambassador Jorge Valero of Venezuela; the Executive Director of the Pan American Development Foundation (PADF), John Sanbrailo; and PADF Director Pilar Heraud.