Water-borne diseases such as cholera can strike and spread quickly, aggravated by the lack of clean water and poor sanitation. In October of 2010, cholera broke out in Artibonite, Haiti, and International Medical Corps was one of the very first medical organizations to respond. By aggressively rolling out a network of cholera treatment centers and mobile medical units to Haiti’s most remote and affected areas, International Medical Corps was able to respond immediately to the emergency. In the months that followed, water and sanitation projects as well as education and training laid the foundation for Haiti to eradicate cholera. International Medical Corps continues to provide response to cholera in Haiti, most recently following Hurricane Sandy.
The World Health Organization states that one of the most common causes of death in emergencies and disasters is diarrheal illnesses such as cholera. Disaster-affected populations are very vulnerable to communicable disease – they are frequently without proper nutrition and sanitary facilities and often suffer from stress and fatigue. But diarrheal illnesses are preventable, and International Medical Corps works to prevent communicable disease in every emergency we respond to.
International Medical Corps and DayOne Response continue efforts to secure support for completing the first phase of this clean water pilot program, the manufacturing of the Waterbags. The Waterbags will provide a point-of-use clean water solution in post-disaster areas, when drinkable water can be scarce and the risk of disease increases with each day without water.
These resource development efforts include both small and large foundation as well as young social entrepreneurs. International Medical Corps is also in discussion with UN-level partners to pilot the project in up to two countries in East and Central Africa. Before we can begin, however, we need to raise the funds to manufacture the waterbags.
This is where you can help. Your donation makes a difference. A ten-dollar donation will provide Procter and Gamble Water Purifier packets for 5 families that receive the Waterbag. $54 will provide an entire family with a Waterbag and the Purifier Packets for the pilot program.
We need your help, and the people affected by large-scale disasters need your help, too. Donate today, and you can be a part of a unique program that has the potential to save thousands of lives.
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Director, Resource Development