Washington January 25, 2005 — The American Red Cross announced a $50 million commitment to WFP, meeting the immediate needs of up to two million tsunami survivors through the provision and distribution of emergency food aid. This aid will be distributed in Sri Lanka, Indonesia and Maldives - three of the hardest hit countries where hunger, particularly for vulnerable children, is already an existing problem due to poverty and civil conflict.
WASHINGTON January 25, 2005 — The American Red Cross announced a $50 million commitment to the United Nations World Food Program (WFP), meeting the immediate needs of up to 2 million tsunami survivors through the provision and distribution of emergency food aid. This aid will be distributed in Sri Lanka, Indonesia and Maldives - three of the hardest hit countries where hunger, particularly for vulnerable children, is already an existing problem due to poverty and civil conflict.
"The American Red Cross will work with the World Food Program to ensure swift delivery of food to those who need it most," said American Red Cross President and CEO Marty Evans. "By partnering with the World Food Program, much needed food will reach millions of tsunami survivors in a streamlined and efficient way."
"This is a ground-breaking new partnership for us. This gift will make it possible to feed hundreds of thousands of tsunami victims. The Red Cross has acted rapidly, joining forces to make sure that every hungry family receives food in the affected areas," said James Morris, Executive Director of WFP.
Working with the American Red Cross and members of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, a global network reaching the most vulnerable communities around the world, the WFP has put its global distribution network into motion in the tsunami-affected region. To date, more than 330,000 Indonesians impacted by the tsunami are receiving food aid, with another 750,000 in Sri Lanka and 44,000 in the Maldives.
The $50 million contribution, along with the assignment of American Red Cross staff to support the food distribution, is part of the organization's tsunami relief and recovery plan, which addresses five key needs in the tsunami-affected area: food and safe water, immediate family supplies, mental health counseling, healthcare and disease prevention, and disaster preparedness and prevention measures. For more information about this plan, visit www.redcross.org.
About the American Red Cross
Governed by volunteers and supported by community donations, the American Red Cross is a nationwide network of nearly 900 field units dedicated to saving lives and helping people prevent, prepare for and respond to emergencies. Led by 1 million volunteers and 36,000 employees, the Red
Cross annually mobilizes relief to families affected by more than 70,000 disasters, trains almost 12 million people in lifesaving skills and keeps U.S. military families connected worldwide. The American Red Cross is the largest supplier of blood and blood products to more than 3,000 hospitals across the nation and also assists victims of international disasters and conflicts at locations worldwide. Marsha J. Evans is the President and CEO of the American Red Cross.
About the United Nations World Food Program
Set-up in 1963, the World Food Program (WFP) is the United Nations frontline agency in the fight against global hunger. In 2003, WFP fed 104 million people in 81 countries, including 56 million hungry children. In emergencies, WFP provides fast, efficient, life-sustaining relief to millions of people who are the victims of natural or man-made disasters. This includes refugees and internally displaced persons.
Contact: American Red Cross
Contact: World Food Program