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Global Update: $1 Billion in Medical Aid; Unrest in Haiti and Myanmar

A look at Direct Relief's activities around the world.

Haiti's St. Boniface Hospital staff members in full PPE. (Photo by Nadia Todres for St. Boniface Hospital)
Haiti's St. Boniface Hospital staff members in full PPE. (Photo by Nadia Todres for St. Boniface Hospital)

In Summary

  • Since January 1, 2021, Direct Relief has provided more than $1 billion in medical aid to partners in the U.S. and around the world.
  • As Haiti confronts unrest and Covid-19, Direct Relief’s support is ongoing. Since January 1, the organization has sent more than $21 million worth of aid.
  • In the wake of Myanmar’s military coup, two grants totaling $480,000 will help on-the-ground providers care for trauma-related injuries, Covid-19, and much more.
  • The U.S. Gulf Coast is bracing for hurricanes. Direct Relief has staged caches of emergency medical supplies at health centers and clinics in the region.

 

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Direct Relief’s Support in 2021 Passes $1 Billion Mark

A shipment of personal protective equipment, oxygen concentrators, and other requested supplies for Covid-19 response was staged on July 2, 2021 at Direct Relief's warehouse before departing for health facilities in Sri Lanka. (Lara Cooper/Direct Relief)
A shipment of personal protective equipment, oxygen concentrators, and other requested supplies for Covid-19 response was staged on July 2, 2021 at Direct Relief’s warehouse before departing for health facilities in Sri Lanka. (Lara Cooper/Direct Relief)

The situation: Covid-19 has dramatically increased health care needs around the world, overtaxing already fragile health systems and creating a cascade of indirect effects.

The response: Since January 1 of this year, Direct Relief has supported partners in the United States and worldwide with more $1 billion in medical aid, more than ever before in such a short span of time. The total amount of support given during the whole of 2020 was $1.3 billion.

The impact: Medical aid and funding have been used to treat Covid-19; protect health care workers from the virus; respond to natural disasters and humanitarian crises, provide care for chronic diseases, rare conditions, and mothers and children; and much more.

 

As Haiti Plunges Further into Unrest Amid a New Wave of Covid-19, Direct Relief Provides Support

A St. Boniface Hospital Staff member processes a Covid-19 test. (Photo by Nadia Todres for St. Boniface Hospital)
A St. Boniface Hospital Staff member processes a Covid-19 test. (Photo by Nadia Todres for St. Boniface Hospital)

The situation: Haiti is dealing with a new, widespread wave of Covid-19, and even most health care workers are not vaccinated. At the same time, gang violence makes it more difficult to get oxygen and other medical supplies to hospitals, as a New York Times update citing Direct Relief reported.

The response: Since January of 2021, Direct Relief has supported hospitals and other health organizations in Haiti with $21.6 million in medical aid – more than 148,000 pounds’ worth.

The impact: The aid has helped hospitals and other organizations fighting Covid-19 get oxygen and protect their frontline workers, as well as continue to provide much-needed health services.

 

Myanmar’s Military Coup Has Gravely Disrupted Health Care. Two Grants Will Help Meet Needs on the Ground.

A Community Partners International staff member speaks with a community member in the Ayeyarwady Region of Myanmar. (Photo by Gregg Butensky/Kirana Productions for Community Partners International)
A Community Partners International staff member speaks with a community member in the Ayeyarwady Region of Myanmar. (Photo by Gregg Butensky/Kirana Productions for Community Partners International)

The situation: Myanmar’s unrest has compromised health care in the country, even as Covid-19 rates spike and violence causes trauma-related injuries.

The response: Direct Relief is supporting the Asia-based nonprofit Community Partners International, which works with on-the-ground groups, with a total of $480,000 in grants.

The impact: The funding will bolster health care providers working to fight Covid-19, provide maternal and child health care, treat wounds, and offer other essential services.

 

The Gulf Coast Expects an “Above Average” Hurricane Season

Hurricane Harvey battered the Texas coast in August 2017, causing major flooding, property damage, and loss. (Bryn Blanks/Direct Relief)
Hurricane Harvey battered the Texas coast in August 2017, causing major flooding, property damage, and loss. (Bryn Blanks/Direct Relief)

The situation: With the earliest fifth named storm already on the books, health care providers on the Texas Gulf Coast are bracing for an active hurricane season. That means preparing for storm effects that range from mental health concerns to unmanaged chronic disease.

The response: In advance of hurricane season, Direct Relief has pre-positioned caches of emergency supplies across the southeastern United States, so that health centers and clinics responding to storms will have the supplies they need.

The impact: The emergency caches contain the medications and medical supplies most frequently requested in the wake of a hurricane or tropical storm.

 

In Brief

The United States

  • Over the past two weeks, Direct Relief has made 1,043 shipments to 615 partners, totaling $7.8 million in value and more than 25,599 pounds.
  • During that time, $1.5 million in grants has been distributed.
  • The organization has launched its second year of Community Health Awards designed to expand access to family planning services. Three health clinics will receive $50,000 awards to implement or expand these services.

Around the World

  • In the past two weeks, Direct Relief has made 58 shipments to 41 partners in 25 countries, totaling $42.6 million in value and more than 201,878 pounds.
  • $79,000 in grants was distributed over the same two weeks.
  • Over 2 million masks will be transported to Mexico for use in non-medical settings.
  • Direct Relief co-hosted a webinar focused on improving access to care for people with diabetes.
  • The Vaseline Healing Project will work to sponsor students from across Africa to become health officers focusing on skin health and dermatology in their home countries.

 

Other News

Jitsu (center) and his teammates react to a large donation made during their segment of the "Zeldathon Side Quest: A Fantastic Journey" digital fundraising event in June. The event went on to raise over $77,000 for Direct Relief.
Jitsu (center) and his teammates react to a large donation made during their segment of the “Zeldathon Side Quest: A Fantastic Journey” digital fundraising event in June. The event went on to raise over $77,000 for Direct Relief.

Introducing Direct Relief Connect, a new podcast by Direct Relief. The show brings together highly skilled philanthropists and members of Direct Relief’s staff to provide an in-depth look at the organization’s work, as well as give a glimpse into guests’ personal journeys and how they came to support causes they are passionate about.

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