A major Jewish humanitarian-aid organization will participate in providing medical relief and supplies to Haiti’s victims of Hurricane Matthew, which hit the Caribbean island on Tuesday.
“Our hearts go out to the people of Haiti, and the wider region, in the wake of Hurricane Matthew’s devastation,” said Alan H. Gill, CEO of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC). “All too familiar with the acute needs facing Haitians, JDC activated its network of international and local partners and is mobilizing relief efforts in an expression of humanitarian solidarity and Jewish values.”
The organization is working with local and NGO contacts and long-term partners “to assess needs and ensure the most vulnerable victims are cared for in an expedient manner,” Gill said.
JDC will focus on the south of the island, where reports from the hardest-hit areas note torrential rains, flooding and strong winds wrought damage to homes, infrastructure and farming stock and land.
Hurricane Matthew has also affected Jamaica, Cuba and the Dominican Republic. Florida and South Carolina authorities have begun evacuation procedures as the hurricane moves closer to the United States.
The United Nations said Hurricane Matthew is causing the worst humanitarian crisis in Haiti since a 2010 earthquake left more than 200,000 people dead and tens of thousands homeless. The UN estimates 2.3 million people are being affected by Hurricane Matthew.
JDC provided relief and rebuilding assistance following the 2010 disaster in Haiti and has aided as many as 70 countries after they faced natural or man-made catastrophes.