Monday, April 12, 2010

A comment from the Red Cross

Gloria Huang posted a comment to today's post clarifying the shelter situation from the Red Cross perspective. I thought that it would be courteous to reproduce the post on the main blog so that everyone will see it without clicking on 'comment' on the original post. I want to thank MS Huang for the clear report.
Gloria Huang said... Hi Rick,

I work at the American Red Cross headquarters and am hoping that I can help clarify the tent issue you mentioned above.

I think that the report you are referencing actually states that we have provided over 1 million people with shelter materials, which include tents and tarps and other shelter supplies. Our goal has been to provide emergency shelter materials to all of the estimated 1.3 million homeless by May 1st, when rains are expected to reach their peak.

We also plan to help construct transitional shelters out of timber or steel as soon as possible, as more rubble is cleared and other factors like land ownership are resolved.

As far as tarps versus tents goes, Red Cross workers on the ground are conversing with survivors to decide whether to provide a tarp or a tent. Factors in this decision process include: amount of rubble in the area, size of family unit, who is most vulnerable, the survivors’ needs, and which item would work best for them as a transitional shelter until a more permanent one can be found or built.

Shelter is definitely a priority right now. We actually just released a three month report on Haiti relief, which I hope will help provide you with more detail:

Feel free to also email me with any other questions you have, and I will do my best to find answers for you. Thanks,

Gloria Huang

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I welcome comments, questions or anything anyone wishes to post on the situation in Haiti.