Fuel Relief Fund

Fuel Relief Fund's mission is to provide temporary fuel assistance to victims in areas stricken by natural disaster.
Jul 1, 2016

Ecuador Earthquake Response Final Report

Final Report: Fuel Relief Fund Ecuador Earthquake Response

Fuel Relief Fund sources and provides free fuel to individuals and communities in need after major disasters. We also are an independent operational support partner of United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UH OCHA), and help fuel the life-saving work of aid agencies; powering vehicles and generators, providing first-response needs including medical aid, food, water, light and shelter. We have been at every major disaster over the past nine years including the earthquakes in Haiti, Japan and Nepal. Every dollar raised for our relief efforts is used to provide fuel to affected communities.

A devastating 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit Northern Ecuador on Saturday, April 16. Our team of Fuel Relief Fund volunteers was on the ground in Ecuador on Thursday, April 21, distributing fuel to individuals and families in hardest-hit areas of Ecuador's Manabí Province. We decided to deploy to Ecuador based on the humanitarian impact of the earthquake and assessment of our own capacity to assist local communities.

Our primary aim for the response effort was to reach 10,000 households in the affected areas with fuel relief. As with each of our response efforts, the type of fuel we provide varies according to local context and need. By Saturday, after meetings with local officials, the United Nations, and other key humanitarian agencies on the ground, we identified that immediate needs included safe water and capacity to cook for individuals and families in affected remote areas. The earthquake and lack of access to fuel it created exacerbated existing vulnerabilities, and created new risks for already-impoverished local communities. Children, the elderly, single mothers and other vulnerable groups were most at risk.

Ecuadorians rely on propane tanks to cook, with refills delivered regularly by state-subsidized gas trucks that roam all parts of the countryside. Further, fuel is required to cook Ecuadorians basic staple foods of rice and beans. Price gouging and a lack of availability of propane destroyed families’ abilities to access and purchase propane, and without a means to cook and boil/ purify water, this situation compromised their food security, and threatened to severely impact their health and wellbeing. Further, a lack of propane had negative economic impacts on households and local markets. With time spent searching for fuel to meet basic needs, livelihoods – including many who worked in the services and tourism sectors – were threatened. The earthquake also damaged the propane delivery infrastructure and transportation systems, and caused water sanitation systems to be in disrepair. With the fuel we provided, families were able to heat local well and other water sources while water treatment plants were being repaired.  

Our volunteer team worked with the local administration and volunteers from the affected communities throughout the entirety of the response. The volunteers - were youth who worked tirelessly to distribute fuel to their community neighbors. Our team located the closest sources of propane and a viable transportation route to the affected areas. The local administration provided several vehicles to strengthen our efforts. By the end of our first week, with the generous support of our donors, we were able to distribute nearly 5,000 10-gallon propane tanks! The distribution focused on those individuals and families that needed fuel in the Manabí Province and neighboring communities which were heavily affected by the earthquake.  Many of the communities where we distributed fuel had not received any relief aid, and ours was met with exuberance. With an average household size of four, that fuel supported up to 2o,000 Ecuadorians in need. As we made our way slowly through small communities which suffered so much devastation, it is hard to describe the joy (above photo). This was only matched by the tireless work ethic and spirit of the 20 volunteers who worked with us.

By the end of our second week in Ecuador, we had distributed enough fuel to reach another 3,625 families, bringing the total number of people reached in two weeks to 34,500. During our second deployment, made possible by the generosity of Global Giving donors, we distributed another 5,045 10-gallon propane tanks, providing fuel for 20,180 people. We are excited to share that by the end of our mission, we exceeded our goal of reaching 10,000 households with fuel relief: we reached a total of 13,670 households. This means that 54,680 people received fuel relief in our three-week deployment – enough fuel to provide for an average household’s needs for one month.

During our time in Ecuador, so many people and families touched our hearts.  For instance, when officials said that Bahía, Ecuador, would need to be totally rebuilt, locals said they intended to stay and rebuild it. That is the spirit of Ecuador that we came to know and love. In another instance, as a mother stood by her young son’s bedside, he cried out how grateful he was for 'pure water' that his mother used to wash his wounded leg, crushed by a falling wall in the earthquake. Without fuel, his mother would have been without a way to purify water to cleanse her son's wounds. We were also humbled by the energetic support of the local administration of Jaramijó, who presented us with an award for ‘excellent service to the people of Ecuador’ after completion of our fuel distribution.

Because we rely on volunteer support and in-kind gifts for the majority of costs, we accomplished all of this relief with $50,000. That means that each dollar we raised provided fuel for one individual – nearly half of which are children – to eat, drink safely, and bathe in warm water.

After the Ecuador response, we conducted two learning reviews, one internally, and one with our partner UN OCHA. We identified a number of areas including improving preparedness through systematization of fuel supply chain management practices, which will strengthen future response efforts. We are now integrating the learning from these two reviews into our standard operating procedures. We are also developing a beneficiary feedback tool to use during future responses, which will allow us to incorporate views of recipients of fuel relief, further strengthening our programming model.

We are grateful for the support of our donors and partners in providing emergency fuel relief necessary for Ecuadorian families while the local governments work to rebuild roads and infrastructure, and restore capacities to meet basic household needs.

Thank you for giving generously to support the Fuel Relief Fund Ecuador Response!

Links:


Attachments:
May 4, 2016

Update from Ecuador - 3 May 2016

Fuel Relief Fund distribution in Porto Viejo
Fuel Relief Fund distribution in Porto Viejo

Report: Ecuador Earthquake Relief Funding May 3, 2016

Our team of Fuel Relief Fund Volunteer First Responders was on the ground distributing fuel in Ecuador on Thursday, April 21. We deployed to Ecuador based on our assessment of the scale of humanitarian need, and our aim to make a solid, rapid contribution to help relieve the suffering of the people of Ecuador. We are extremely grateful for the timely support of our donors and GlobalGiving that allowed us to do that, because in just over a week, we have reached thousands of families in need with fuel relief!

After meetings with local officials, local communities, the United Nations, and other key humanitarian agencies on the ground, by Saturday we identified that immediate household needs for fuel were to ensure safe water and capacity to cook for families in affected remote areas.

Ecuadorians rely routinely on propane tanks to cook, with refills delivered regularly by state subsidized gas trucks that roam all parts of the countryside. The earthquake has destroyed the delivery infrastructure and transportation system, however, and deliveries are not being made. Furthermore, water sanitation systems are in disrepair and will be for some time. Families can heat local well and other water sources with propane gas as well while water treatment plants are repaired.  

As always, our response is a collective effort led by Fuel Relief Fund with active engagement of local communities and the local administration. The affected community has local knowledge and many valuable capacities to contribute to relief and recovery efforts. In Manta, a group of volunteers including youth from heavily-affected areas joined us to assist our First Response team with logistics. We worked with a local translator and the volunteers to identify the closest sources of propane and a viable transportation route, and we commenced distribution. Along the way, the Mayor of Manta was so passionately in support of our mission, that he loaned us two vehicles for transportation complete with our logo displayed in the windows. With the generous support of GlobalGiving donors, we have been able to purchase fuel and tanks for those families that need them and complete 6,000 10-gallon tank distributions in only a week to Manta and neighboring communities - that are not receiving deliveries. With an average household size of four, that fuel is supporting up to 24,000 Ecuadorians in need!

Because we rely on volunteer support and in-kind gifts for the majority of costs, we have accomplished all of this relief with only $24,000. That means that each dollar we raise is providing fuel for a victim – more than half of which are children – to eat, drink safely, and bathe in warm water. We are proud of this accomplishment.

Our goal now is to raise an additional $20,000 – with which we can serve another 20,000 people, providing temporary relief necessary for these families while the local governments work to rebuild roads and infrastructure.

Thank you for giving generously and for your support of Fuel Relief Fund's Ecuador Earthquake response!

Mother and daughte after receiving fuel aid, Manta
Mother and daughte after receiving fuel aid, Manta
Fuel Relief Fund First Response Team 04/24 Ecuador
Fuel Relief Fund First Response Team 04/24 Ecuador
Jul 21, 2015

Global Giving Project Report: NEPAL 2015

Filling up 55 gallon drums for distribution
Filling up 55 gallon drums for distribution

Disaster struck our global community April 25, 2015, when a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck the people of Nepal.  Stretching already humble Nepali resources, hundreds of thousands of terrified people were left without shelter, water and provisions necessary to sustain life.  Initial reports were received that indicated over 9,000 people were killed and over 23,000 additional people were injured.

When Fuel Relief Fund (FRF) learned of the situation, our disaster response process went into play.  A decision was made within the first 24 hours that FRF would respond to the needs of the Nepali people.  Our three man team arrived in Kathmandu within 48 hours of the initial quake.  Following standard response protocol, we made contact with the United Nations OCHA representative to learn the immediate needs and requirements.  FRF responders took an initial $50,000 from our reserves to procure the required fuel for distribution.  Global Giving subsequently donated $50,000 to FRF to assist our deployment.  One hundred percent of the Global Giving donation went to the Nepali effort.

The FRF deployment team procured over 13,400 gallons of gasoline and diesel which was subsequently distributed as follows:

  • On the first day of our operations in Nepal, FRF fueled vehicles for the United Nations OCHA and the World Food Program (WFP).  Subsequently, Doctors Without Borders and other international NGOs and local relief agencies were provided free fuel;
  • FRF provided fuel to power generators for area hospitals such that they could maintain their ability to serve patient needs, as well as the utilization of their ambulances, buses, and other operationally necessary equipment.

 

  • The FRF team also supplied fuel for generators used by the Nepali people who were camped in open fields because they were afraid to stay in their dwellings for fear of them crumbling during the many numbered after-shocks.
  • Provided fuel to the City of Kathmandu to power their water treatment plant that produces 10,000 liters of fresh water an hour.
  • FRF also procured the use of a flatbed truck to transport 55 gallon barrels of gasoline and diesel to the remote villages on the mountain sides of Nepal.
  • Provided fuel for many small motorcycles that local Nepalese used to get food and water to the remote mountain villages.  Several of the roads and bridges were impossible to navigate in a vehicle.

The immediate and significant impact of FRF’s deployment was that the many relief agencies and the Nepali people were able to get the fuel needed to sustain their lives until a more established source of fuel could be restored.  The provision of free fuel is the primary mission of FRF.  Once traditional sources of fuel were resumed, our team returned to the United States.

FRF’s month long deployment and the services provided were met with sincere appreciation from the NGO’s that were on the scene providing their own brand of service and especially from the local residents who needed our help during the initial ordeal.  The reaction of the UN OCHO and WFP personnel was provided with a great deal of appreciation.  FRF strongly believes that our relationship with those two arms of the United Nations has grown extensively and the possibility of a Standby Partnership Agreement between FRF and WFP may be in the works.

 

Time after time FRF sees that little can be accomplished without fuel, an opinion also expressed by the UN OCHA representatives.  In fact, fuel might be thought of as the critical life blood of every disaster relief operation.  Fuel Relief Fund is still the only international disaster relief NGO that provides free fuel for the needs of the people affected by the disaster.

2000 liters donated to Doctors Without Borders
2000 liters donated to Doctors Without Borders
40 Thank you & commendation letters from our trip
40 Thank you & commendation letters from our trip
Valarie Amos, USG, UN OCHA & FRF Volunteer, Ted H.
Valarie Amos, USG, UN OCHA & FRF Volunteer, Ted H.
 
   

donate now:

An anonymous donor will match all new monthly recurring donations, but only if 75% of donors upgrade to a recurring donation today.
Terms and conditions apply.
Make a monthly recurring donation on your credit card. You can cancel at any time.
Make a donation in honor or memory of:
What kind of card would you like to send?
How much would you like to donate?
  • $25
    give
  • $50
    give
  • $75
    give
  • $100
    give
  • $150
    give
  • $250
    give
  • $500
    give
  • $1,000
    give
  • $25
    each month
    give
  • $50
    each month
    give
  • $75
    each month
    give
  • $100
    each month
    give
  • $150
    each month
    give
  • $250
    each month
    give
  • $500
    each month
    give
  • $1,000
    each month
    give
  • $
    give
gift Make this donation a gift, in honor of, or in memory of someone?

Reviews of Fuel Relief Fund

Great Nonprofits
Read and write reviews about Fuel Relief Fund on GreatNonProfits.org.
WARNING: Javascript is currently disabled or is not available in your browser. GlobalGiving makes extensive use of Javascript and will not function properly with Javascript disabled. Please enable Javascript and refresh this page.