In September, Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico and Dominica, plus other islands in the Caribbean. The hurricane destroyed much of both islands' key infrastructure, buildings and homes, and there are growing concerns for the elderly and other vulnerable groups. Both Puerto Rico and Dominica are struggling with the post-disaster short and longer-term needs. With the situation developing, and shelters rapidly filling up, the fears about the physical and psychological impact are mounting.
IsraAID's Emergency Response teams will provide emergency relief, post-trauma mental health support, medical care and water sanitation and hygiene solutions, as needed, across both islands. The team will distribute emergency supplies, such as basic hygiene items; install water filtration systems; provide medical support to local hospitals and operate a mobile medical unit; and facilitate child-friendly spaces. The teams will focus their efforts on the most isolated, hard-to-reach communities.
The first few days following a disaster are crucial towards minimizing its long-term destructive effects. Beyond that, as part of IsraAID's core emphasis on long-term, sustainable recovery, the team will coordinate and engage with local authorities and communities to a) build a longer-term recovery strategy, and b) share expertise and knowledge in sectors such as, psycho-social support and water, sanitation and hygiene, which IsraAID has accrued in 17 years of operations across 41 countries.