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Millwood, Virginia, October 21, 2009

International health education and humanitarian aid organization Project HOPE and Seattle-based global health and equity organization Uplift International are sending nearly $940,000 in medicines and medical supplies to Indonesiain response to two earthquakesthat recently struck the nation’s Sumatra Province. Measuring 7.9 and 6.2 in magnitude, the earthquakes resulted in more than 1,000 deaths, 295 missing, over 2,200 injured and left tens of thousands without shelter. 

Project HOPE and Uplift International are working with the Indonesian Medical Association (IDI) in support of its emergency medical response, which includes mobile medical units and clinics that are providing direct health services to the survivors. The three organizations also will ensure that the medicines and medical supplies are distributed equitably and utilized by hospitals and health clinics in the areas impacted by the earthquakes. “The people of Indonesia hold a dear place in the heart of Project HOPE and we are doing all to provide aid in the most effective and caring manner possible,” said John P. Howe, III, M.D., President and CEO of Project HOPE. “The SS HOPE’s first humanitarian mission 50 years ago was to Indonesia and HOPE has had ties to the people and country ever since. On behalf of the HOPE family, I feel an urgent need to provide medical attention for those injured, and to procure medicines and medical supplies for our friends in need.” 

Mark Schlansky, Founder and CEO of Uplift International said “Uplift International, Project HOPE and IDI worked together to bring aid to thousands in the aftermath of the 2004 tsunami that devastated Aceh in North Sumatra. Uplift International conducted a disaster management training program for IDI doctors in 2007 and it is gratifying to see the results of the training being effectively implemented during this time of crisis.”

Corporate partners such as 3M, Abbott, BD, Codman & Shurtleff, Covidien, Ethicon, Hospira, McNeil Consumer Products and Schering-Plough donated medicines and medical supplies to Project HOPE.  Among the donated items are anti-bacterials, anti-allergics, anti-inflammatory drugs, sutures, instrument sets, stethoscopes, thermometers, IV solutions and other assorted consumable medical supplies like gauze, surgical kits and masks. 

Uplift International’s corporate partner, FedEx, has donated space on its jets to ship the 11 tons of relief supplies to Indonesia. Portions of the relief shipment departed New Jersey’s Newark Liberty International Airport beginning on October 17. 

Project HOPE’s history in Indonesia began in 1960 when the SS HOPE, the world’s first peace-time hospital ship, visited Indonesia providing free medical care.  Since 1986 HOPE has collaborated with universities and the Indonesian Ministry of Health and Welfare to provide medical training and health education to midwives, nurses, physicians, as well as developed a biomedical engineering program.

In 2004, Project HOPE, with the assistance of Uplift International, sent more than $7 million in medical aid and over 400 medical volunteers to the island nation in response to the tsunami.

HOPE has continued to address the health care needs of tsunami affected areas. In 2007, the United Kingdom’s Big Lottery Fund provided funding to Project HOPE to conduct a five-year program to improve the health of women, infants and children in Nagan Raya. Just this year, HOPE was once again awarded funding by the Big Lottery Fund to continue its work in Indonesia, this time setting up lifesaving maternal child health programs in Aceh Barat, a district still struggling to recover from one of the most catastrophic natural disasters in recent history.

About Project HOPE
Founded in 1958, Project HOPE (Health Opportunities for People Everywhere) is dedicated to providing lasting solutions to health problems with the mission of helping people to help themselves. Identifiable to many by the SS HOPE, the world’s first peacetime hospital ship, Project HOPE now provides medical training and health education, as well as conducts humanitarian assistance programs in more than 35 countries. For more information, please visit www.projecthope.org

About Uplift International
Uplift International is dedicated to improving the right to health through technical assistance in health, law and education.  It endeavors to increase awareness about the linkages between population health, human rights and economic development.  Since its founding in 1997, Uplift International has developed and implemented programs in health and human rights, humanitarian assistance, maternal and child health, telemedicine, and medical education in Southeast Asia.  Uplift International partnered with Project HOPE and the Indonesian Medical Association (IDI) in the wake of the tsunami that devastated Aceh, Indonesia in 2004.  The collaborative effort brought emergency medical relief, to over 19,000 survivors who were treated in temporary clinics, hospitals and health centers.    At present, Uplift  implements  programs in Indonesia that build the capacity of health professionals, teachers and communities to improve health.  Programs focus on improving services for women and children victims of violence, adding health and nutrition education to the currently limited curriculum in the poorest madrasah (Islamic day schools) and promoting community based training on Avian Influenza prevention and control.  Uplift International has been working continuously in Indonesia since 1998. It has a permanent office in Jakarta, Indonesia. More information may be found at www.upliftinternational.org

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