Emergency Medical Supplies Shipped to Ecuador
Project HOPE's disaster relief team traveled to Ecuador following the April 16, 2016, 7.8 magnitude earthquake, to assess the situation and prepare for the delivery of medical supplies, medicines and volunteer help if needed. At this time, the government of Ecuador has not requested additional volunteers, but HOPE has shipped, by air, urgently needed donated medical supplies. The emergency medical supplies shipped were requested by the government of Ecuador and are valued at $80,000. Project HOPE is standing by to assist if additional help is needed.
Thousands of people were injured and more than 600 people died as a result of the massive earthquake. Several large aftershocks, and a second earthquake of magnitude 6.0 on April 21 added challenge to relief efforts.
Staff member, Teresa Narvaez, HOPE’s country director in the Dominican Republic and a native Ecuadorian, was part of the team on the ground in Ecuador. Below is her emotional report filmed in a neighborhood close to where she grew up.
Project HOPE has a long history in Ecuador beginning with the third voyage of the SS HOPE which visited the country in 1963. At that time, Project HOPE volunteers treated widespread tuberculosis, parasitic diseases and malnutrition and then led a nutrition program for the poverty stricken county working with South American medical counterparts to improve health care for women and children.
In more recent times, HOPE volunteers aboard the USNS Comfort traveled to Ecuador in May of 2011 as part of the U.S. Navy’s Continuing Promise mission. Along with Navy counterparts, HOPE medical volunteers provided health care to more than 5,200 Ecuadorians.
Project HOPE has a history of helping after natural disasters. In recent years, Project HOPE has been involved in almost every major disaster relief event including Indonesia following the 2004 Tsunami, Hurricane Katrina in 2005, in Haiti following the 2010 earthquake, the Philippines in response to Typhoon Haiyan in 2013, and most recently in Nepal following the 2015 earthquakes.
HOPE’s two-phase disaster relief approach begins by immediately responding to needs with emergency medical support including delivering supplies, medicines and volunteer medical help following disasters when needed.
We then transition relief efforts into long-term health programs that address gaps in depleted and damaged medical systems and
provide sustainable solutions for the affected communities.
Ann MacGregor traveled with the SS HOPE from its launch in 1960. Throughout her six-year journey, she wrote letters to her mother that she later retrieved and made into a book entitled Letters of HOPE.
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