People are coming together to help Haiti after Hurricane Matthew devastated the island this week, killing more than 800 people and sending 61,500 to shelters.
The storm, which made landfall in Haiti on Tuesday, damaged up to 80 percent of homes in the south of the country, according to UNICEF. The new wave of destruction comes as thousands in the country remain homeless from the massive 2010 earthquake.
Hurricane Matthew made its way to the U.S on Friday, slamming into the Florida coast and leaving 300,000 households without power. Four U.S. states ― Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina ― have declared states of emergency.
In Haiti, organizations and individuals have come together to provide much-needed short-term relief, as well as long-term support to rebuild after the storm.
“This is the worst storm Haiti has seen in decades,” UNICEF’s Marc Vincent said in a release. “Our first priority is to make sure children have enough safe water.”
Here’s how you can offer assistance:
1. Help Provide Emergency Medical Support To Those In Need
The Red Cross in Haiti has mobilized over 3,000 volunteers and staff to help communities in the wake of the hurricane. The organization is delivering first aid, medical care and shelter assistance.
To support the Red Cross’ efforts in Haiti, donate here.
Americares, an organization that delivers medical aid to countries worldwide, has sent a shipment of medicine and supplies to the “Hope for Haiti” clinic in Les Cayes, one of the hardest-hit areas. The group is planning other shipments, including fluids to treat cholera.
The organization plans to deliver around $1.6 million in aid to Haiti to help the country recover from Hurricane Matthew.
To support Americares’ efforts in Haiti, donate here.
For every dollar donated, the organization will provide 100 doses of medication.
To support Planting Peace’s efforts in Haiti, donate here.
2. Support Groups Getting Food To Those Affected By The Storm
CARE International, an organization fighting poverty worldwide, is distributing clean water, food and emergency supplies in Haiti in the wake of the hurricane. The organization is currently providing meals to hundreds of people in evacuation shelters.
“We do experience recurring crises in Haiti, people are still feeling the long-term effects of the earthquake, then the cholera outbreak in 2010,” CARE Haiti’s Jean-Michel Vigreux said in a release. “The population is very strained. Strengthening people’s resilience and boosting the reconstruction are key.”
To support CARE’s efforts in Haiti, donate here.
Food For The Poor, a group that provides food, housing and emergency relief to countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, is sending rice, canned meats and other food to southern Haiti. Over the next few weeks, the charity plans to ship 30 containers of supplies to the country.
“A hurricane is the last thing Haiti need[s] right now,” President and CEO Robin Mahfood said in a statement. “We will do our best to help them to recover.”
To support Food For The Poor’s efforts in Haiti, donate here.
3. Ensure People Have Access To Clean Water And Sanitation
Less than one in five people in Haiti’s rural areas have access to improved sanitation, and the problem may be worsened by the hurricane.
UNICEF has sent advance emergency supplies to Haitian authorities to reach up to 10,000 people. Additional supplies, including water purification tablets and plastic sheeting, are being sent to the hardest-hit areas.
To support UNICEF’s efforts in Haiti, donate here.
Oxfam International is distributing hygiene kits and water purification tablets to prevent diseases like cholera.
“What is most urgent now is to provide safe water to prevent disease, as well as food,” Oxfam’s Jean Claude Fignole said in a release. “In the longer term we fear a jump in cholera, and malnutrition due to crop loss.”
To support Oxfam’s efforts in Haiti, donate here.
Plumbers Without Borders is “desperate” for volunteer plumbers who can support hospitals in need in Haiti, Fred Schilling, a longtime supporter, told HuffPost. The aid group is working with Build Health International, which has a number of projects in progress, including a 12,000-square-foot facility, which will accommodate 300 patients and their families.
To support Plumbers Without Borders efforts in Haiti, donate here.
4. Help Keep Kids Safe While Parents Deal With The Storm’s Impact
Save The Children has set up “child-friendly spaces” to provide kids who are unable to go to school with spaces to play. It’s also offering support from trained staff while parents deal with the aftermath of the hurricane.
To support Save The Children’s efforts in Haiti, donate here.