Dear members of Global Giving - your donations have made a life saving difference for many in Southern Chile.
Relying on your donations for the cost of shipping, VIDA has coordinated 5 jam packed containers to Chile since February 27th, carrying over $7 million in desperately needed medical supplies and equipment. These shipments were directed to clinics and hospitals in the most impacted areas in Southern Chile. VIDA is working with FEDES Foundation, our partner in Chile, to support rural hospital and clinics. The inequality of care between urban and rural areas is notable. This factor further exacerbates the situation of the indigenous groups, whose health risk indications are already far higher than non-indigenous populations'. A large portion of Chile's population lives in rural areas and depends on rural primary care centers for its health care. Over 60 clinics were destroyed by the tsunami. In these districts there is a predominance of infectious diseases and basic health care goals are much more difficult to achieve.The recent earthquake caused huge road infrastructure damage, leaving many rural communities even more isolated than previously. It also caused significant damage in the five most populated regions of the country. In the greater metropolis area of Santiago, the health service infrastructures of several counties with high poverty levels were severely damaged. The main shortages are in equipment, supplies, and medication, since local health entities lack sufficient resources to acquire them.Our project focuses on: > Populations in isolated, rural areas who lack access to basic health care services which guarantees their fundamental rights.> Inadequate primary health care conditions for inhabitants of the most socially and economically underprivileged counties of Santiago.VIDA and FEDES is providing equipment, medical supplies, and medication to 100 rural primary care centers located in various regions of the country, especially those affected by the February 27th earthquake and subsequent tsunami. These are the regions of Valparaiso, the Santiago Metropolis area, Libertador O. Higgins, Maule, and Bio Bio.VIDA and FEDES will also provide equipment, medical supplies and medications to the 13 primary care centers in the counties of Cerro Navia and Lo Espejo, which are located in the greater metropolis area of Santiago.
VIDA is working with our long-time partner Fundacion FEDES, a Chilean NGO to distribute the supplies and equipment to hospitals and clinics operating in the city of Curicó and the Region of Maule.
VIDA sent its second and third container shipments to FEDES in June 2010 in collaboration with U.C. Berkeley's Haas School of Business Chilean Alumni Association, Quicksilver, and Cliff Bar.
The two containers contained over $2 million in medical supplies and equipment along with nutritional health bars and warm clothing. These shipments were sent to the southern coast of Chile that was devastated by the earthquake and tsunami.
Sauzal and seven other towns (Santo Toribio, Huerta de Maule, Nirivilo, Tapihue, Quella, Coronel del Maule, Posilla) were the beneficiaries. Sauzal had approximately 200 adobe buildings of which 90% were destroyed. These efforts have equipped Sauzal and other towns with medical supplies to prevent and overcome winter illnesses due to the weather and poor housing conditions. This VIDA project will be supporting Sauzal with a strong rural hospital to serve the regions poor.
On Monday, March 22, VIDA shipped its first container carrying $1 million in medical supplies to Chile in response to the devastating 8.0 earthquake that destroyed the country's southern region. VIDA is working with our long-time partner Fundacion FEDES, a Chilean NGO to distribute the supplies and equipment to hospitals and clinics operating in the city of Curicó and the Region of Maule.
Reports from Steven Colon, founder of FEDES are dire. "We traveled to the Region of Maule, where several of the larger public hospitals are uninhabitable. On our first trip we visited the city of Curicó. 90% of the downtown area of the city is in shambles, with shops, churches and over 2,500 houses destroyed. Population in this city is 136,000. The Curicó public hospital was also completely devastated (we weren't able to go near it because it's under military protection due to the danger of collapse). At the time of the quake, the hospital had 350 beds taken up and all of the patients had to be evacuated."
VIDA is making a long-term commitment to the people of southern Chile to help rebuild their medical infrastructure. VIDA needs your help and is seeking to raise $250,000 to send 25 containers carrying $37.5 million in medical supplies and equipment over the next three years.
Once this project is fully funded we will launch a new Global Giving project describing the entire 3 year plan.
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