Dec 18, 2013

AmeriCares Response to the Flooding in Uttarkhand

AmeriCares Response to the Flooding in Uttarkhand, India

AmeriCares continues to respond in the aftermath of severe monsoon rains that occurred in India in June, devastating the Himalayan region of Uttarakhand.  The heavy downpours and cloudbursts unleashed 23 inches of rain in just 60 hours, causing flash floods, landslides and widespread devastation.  In June and July, at the peak of rescue operations, persistent rain and fog hampered evacuation, relief and clean-up efforts.  The death toll was reported to be almost 6,000, with thousands more displaced and struggling with the lack of access to food, shelter, clean water and health care.

Since the disaster, AmeriCares India has been in the forefront of response efforts to provide medical aid to survivors, working closely with government officials and our local partners. AmeriCares India conducted medical camps in the hardest-hit areas and provided critically-needed medicines. We implemented a program to provide quality primary care for survivors, with particular focus on maternal and child care, the most vulnerable population, and distributed specially created kits to support the health needs of pregnant women, children and families.

AmeriCares India is currently addressing longer-term needs, which includes the rehabilitation of health facilities, the provision of winter survival kits for families still struggling after the historic floods, the provision of delivery kits to traditional birth attendants in Rudraprayag, and the distribution of standard safety equipment for construction workers.


Following are highlights of AmeriCares work over the last six months:

Health camps

AmeriCares India, along with our partners, have conducted 86 health camps and provided medicines to more than 9,000 beneficiaries.

Medical Nutrition Kits

To support expectant mothers and their children, we distributed nearly 6,750 kits with a three-month supply of quality nutritional supplements.

Winter/Family Care Kits

AmeriCares provided family care kits to help prevent vector-borne diseases, and winter kits to protect against extreme winters, enough for more than 12,000 survivors.

 Clean Delivery Kits

To ensure the safety of mother and child during emergency home deliveries, AmeriCares provided 3,000 clean delivery kits in Rudraprayag and Chamoli.

Upgrading health care facilities

AmeriCares is upgrading 31 health care facilities in Rudraprayag and Chamoli by providing them with labor tables, weighing machines and incubators. In addition, AmeriCares has donated 119 vaccine carriers and eight refrigerators within the two districts.

Safety gear

AmeriCares has donated 500 sets of safety gear including helmets, boots, gloves and raincoats to protect construction workers working on roads in Rudraprayag district.

School Stationery Kits for 500 children

AmeriCares has donated special stationery kits for 500 school children in Rudraprayag

Oct 1, 2013

One Child One World Summary

Sub-Saharan Africa is home to an estimated 53 million orphans – 12% of all children in the region. Most orphaned children are taken in by extended family, but with almost half of Africans living on less than a dollar a day, these children often become an unmanageable burden. As a result, a large number of orphans end up living in residential facilities.

To help address the needs of the children in these facilities,AmeriCares is partnering with the Hope for All Foundation and Youth and Social Enterprise Fund  in the One Child One World™ project, a four-year initiative that focuses on improving nutrition and health for orphaned and vulnerable children ages 0 – 18 months, living in 30 residential homes in Ghana.

Ghana has seen a marked  increase in the number of orphaned and vulnerable children along with a high demand for supportive care and housing. With growing demand, many supportive care facilities are experiencing severe resource constraints, including limited access to well-balanced and nutritional meals for children.   

“Children living in these homes are twice as likely to be malnourished.”

Since the launch of One Child One World in July 2011, AmeriCares has delivered four shipments of nutritional supplements, infant formula, and personal care and hygiene products.  At the end of 2011, nearly 600 children had benefited from the program, including one little boy by the name of Kofi.

Left: Kofi upon arrival. Right: Healthy, happy Kofi

Kofi arrived at Royal Seed Home, one of our recipient facilities in central Ghana, when he was 5 months old. He was drastically underweight for his age and suffering from malnutrition. Thankfully, at the same time Kofi arrived at Royal Seed Home, so did AmeriCares first shipments of nutritional supplements.

 In one month’s time, Kofi had gained nearly a pound and caregivers were already noticing other improvements in his health. By the end of March 2012, after four months of receiving nutritional supplements, Kofi had gained 10 pounds. He is now nearly 20 pounds, a healthy weight for a child his age.

Kofi is just one of thousands of children in Ghana who suffer from malnutrition. Research conducted for the One Child One World™ project revealed that children living in these 30 residential homes are twice as likely to be malnourished compared to their Ghanaian counterparts living outside the homes. This is an alarming statistic when you consider the serious health consequences that arise as a result of malnutrition, including increased susceptibility to serious diseases, along with development delays in physical and cognitive growth.

Through the  One Child One World™ project, AmeriCares is giving children like Kofi the opportunity to live happier and healthier lives.

Sep 24, 2013

AmeriCares Relief Efforts in Uttarakhand

Dr. Swati with newborn
Dr. Swati with newborn

Our team in India has been busy serving the needs of people living in the hardest hit area of Rudraprayag, Chamoli and Uttarkashi. During the immediate aftermath of the event we partnered with The Medical Health and Family Welfare Department, The Himalayan Health Trust in Dehradun and The Corporate Social Responsibility of ACC cements to conduct several medical camps. During the month of June and July we treated over 600 patients in over 40 villages.

 In the second phase of this disaster, upon the recommendation of the Uttarakhand state health authorities, AmeriCares chose to move forward with a focused 4-6 months intervention program. During this phase our attention was to complement the efforts of the local government in providing quality primary care and maternal and child care as this target population was identified as being the most vulnerable. Pre-existing conditions of malnutrition, anemia and improper hygiene was exacerbated by the crisis situation.  Since August we have conducted several one week clinics and distributed over 375 Pediatric Health Kits, Maternal Health Kits and Family health kits which included items like vitamins, nutritional supplements, mosquito nets, water purification tabs and blankets. Our three regional partners have also distributed 800 of these kits in the region along with several medicines and medical supplies AmeriCares India Foundation donated for distribution.  

As we move into phase three, we are working to address long term health care needs that might last several months. After carefully considering lessons learn and getting the insights of partner organizations and other stakeholders, we have decided to focus our efforts in five categories:

  1. Training and capacity building
  2. Worker safety
  3. Infrastructure
  4. Upgrading facilities
  5. Distribution of utility and health kits

A lot of work still needs to be done in the region to address the needs of those affected by this deadly flood. We know from past experiences with disasters of this magnitude the extent of involvement and breadth of work that is needed.  We are committed to stay in the region beyond the second phase and are now seeking resources to help us take action in the categories above.  Our efforts will continue to focus on a defined sector in which we have expertise, partner and local government support. The extent of our impact is limited by our resources and the support of the Global Giving community is much needed and highly appreciated.

A recipient of our aid
A recipient of our aid
Providing healthcare from the back of a van
Providing healthcare from the back of a van
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