Friday, January 14, 2011

Working Together

Once again, I'm blown away by the coordination effort that groups in Haiti are pulling off. Now it's in response to the cholera epidemic and not immediate earthquake response, but it's still happening nonetheless.

Direct Relief brought in an unprecedented amount of supplies to respond to the cholera outbreak thanks to the support of corporate donors who make these essential supplies. However, we were then stuck with the challenge of figuring out how to deliver these supplies to the over 100 hospitals and clinics we support in Haiti. Many of them are dozens of hours away along bumpy, unpaved roads and some of the clinics are actually on the islands off the coast of Haiti. Getting the supplies to these areas would require a huge logistical effort and would be extremely costly.

However, out of no where, we were put in contact with a group from Germany who provide helicopter ambulance transports for patients in the rural areas who need to get to a larger, more sophisticated hospital. Well with a sickness like cholera, patients don't necessarily need to be transported--they just need to receive immediate oral re-hydration and possibly an IV and antibiotics. So this group has been generously providing their helicopter for groups like DRI to use to get these supplies out to the rural areas where the people are being treated.

This past week we've made a number of deliveries and hope we can continue to do so in the future as this saves crucial time (and money).

So thanks to German Help One for providing this valuable service!

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