The UK-based international development agency, Christian Aid, has announced the release of £100,000 for immediate emergency relief to help those affected by the earthquake in Haiti, and is working with other agencies and the UN to coordinate the distribution of aid on a far wider scale.
This is the first tranche of assistance as part of a £1 million appeal and participation in the multi-agency Disasters Emergency Committee effort from the UK, linking both secular and religious NGOs.
Yesterday, (16 January 2009) there were reports of an increase in the flow of emergency relief after the severity of the damage to Haiti’s already fragile infrastructure made it very challenging to get aid into the country and to distribute it on arrival.
Christian Aid's Nick Guttmann told BBC News 24: "Now aid is getting in, while Christian Aid is also bringing supplies in by land from the Dominican Republic. We will see aid starting to flow much more quickly."
Christian Aid’s Haitian staff, despite being personally affected when its office collapsed in the earthquake, remain in the country and are working flat out to try and get support to those in greatest need.
The agency, which works with people irrespective of creed or belief, is also sending additional staff from neighbouring countries and from the UK to provide essential support.
Community and aid organisations from the neighbouring Dominican Republic are heavily involved in the emergency response, sourcing relief supplies such as food and blankets, and helping get them into the country by land.
Those wishing to donate on on-line should go to www.christianaid.org.uk/haiti-appeal