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Global Update: Ukraine Response, U.S. Mental Health, Resilient Power

A look at Direct Relief's global activities.

News

Medical aid bound for Ukraine departed from Direct Relief's warehouse on June 17, 2022. (Lara Cooper/Direct Relief)

In Summary

  • FedEx and Direct Relief delivered 52 tons of critical medical aid to Poland for Ukrainian refugees.
  • In response to the war in Ukraine, Direct Relief has dispatched more than 750 tons of medical aid and $14.7 million in direct financial assistance.
  • Hurricane season started on June 1. In preparation, Direct Relief staged caches of emergency medical supplies along the U.S. Gulf and Atlantic coasts and throughout the Caribbean and Central America.
  • Direct Relief awarded $650,000 to fund the construction of the first solar- and battery-powered resilience hub in the Gulf South. The hub will be situated at a New Orleans health center.
  • A new program will provide $2 million in grant funding – and medications for depression and anxiety – to clinics providing mental health care to uninsured patients.

Top Stories

FedEx and Direct Relief Deliver 52 Tons of Critical Medical Aid for Ukrainians

52 tons of medical aid arrives in Warsaw, Poland, on June 26, 2022, for last-mile distribution to health facilities in Ukraine. FedEx donated the charter transportation, free of charge. (FedEx photo)

The situation: Ukraine’s devastating war has continued for four months, displacing approximately 13 million people and creating grave and widespread medical needs.
 
The response: Following FedEx and Direct Relief’s first charter flight of aid for Ukrainian refugees in March, the two organizations worked to deliver 52 tons of additional medical aid via FedEx humanitarian charter flight
 
The impact: Included in the shipment were substantial quantities of emergency medicines and supplies, including health kits, trauma and wound care items, chronic disease and chemical exposure medications, and antibiotics. All items were provided at the request of, and approved by, Ukraine’s Ministry of Health and local Ukrainian organizations, and will be distributed to health facilities within Ukraine.

Direct Relief Emerges as One of Largest Charitable Providers of Aid to Ukraine

Shipments of emergency medical supplies bound for Ukraine are staged at Direct Relief’s warehouse on May 5, 2022. The organization has been providing a consistent flow of medical aid to support the country’s medical system as war continues. (Maeve O’Connor/Direct Relief)

The situation: Four months into the Ukraine war, medical needs remain high both within the country itself and in the surrounding nations receiving refugees.
 
The response: Direct Relief has delivered more than 750 tons (1.5 million pounds) of medicines and supplies and provided over $14.7 million in direct financial assistance to other organizations in the region.
 
The impact: First responders have received medical packs and funding; refugee women and children have received much-needed care; displaced Ukrainians have accessed vital prescription medications like insulin; and much more.

For Hurricane Season, Direct Relief Stages Emergency Medical Supplies

Direct Relief-provided Hurricane Prep Packs visualized along Elsa’s path. Each cache has essential medications to manage chronic diseases, emergency first aid items, hygiene products and more.

The situation: It’s hurricane season. And when a major disaster strikes, the loss of access to life-sustaining medicine and medical care can lead to more deaths and severe illness than physical injury.
 
The response: In preparation, Direct Relief is staging emergency caches of medical supplies at every Southeastern and Gulf state from Virginia to Texas, and throughout the Caribbean, Central America, and other storm-prone locations. 
 
The impact: Health care providers responding to a crisis will have fast access to trauma supplies, antibiotics, medications for chronic conditions like diabetes and hypertension, and more.

A New Grant Will Fund One of the Nation’s Largest Solar Resilience Hubs

Founded as the NO/AIDS Task Force in 1983, CrescentCare has grown to serve a wide range of communities across the city of New Orleans and South Louisiana. (Photo courtesy of CrescentCare)

The situation: In the aftermath of Hurricane Ida last August, 19 New Orleans residents died from excessive heat, lack of oxygen or carbon monoxide poisoning—deaths directly caused by the prolonged power outage. And every new severe storm brings the potential for similar tragedies.

The response: Direct Relief is awarding $650,000 to Together New Orleans’ Community Lighthouse project to fund the construction of the first solar- and battery-powered resilience hub in the Gulf South at CrescentCare community health center, which provides health and wellness services to underserved populations in the City of New Orleans.

The impact: The grant is part of Direct Relief’s new Power for Health Initiative, which seeks to ensure that vulnerable nonprofit community health centers and charitable clinics in the U.S. stay powered and remain operational through increasingly common power outages resulting from natural disasters and electrical grid failures.

A New Program Aims to Increase Access to Mental Health Care

Mental health services are distributed unevenly across the United States, particularly for medically underserved people. Direct Relief, the National Association of Free and Charitable Clinics (NAFC), and Teva Pharmaceuticals today launched a new program to expand medication access and provide grant funding to free and charitable clinics that care for medically underserved patients suffering from depression and/or anxiety. (Photo by Donnie Hedden for Direct Relief)

The situation: The Covid-19 pandemic worsened mental health across the United States, while exacerbating a lack of access to adequate mental health services.
 
The response: Direct Relief, the National Association of Free and Charitable Clinics, and Teva Pharmaceuticals have teamed up to provide clinics with $2 million in grant funding for mental health care, as well as medications to treat medication and anxiety.
 
The impact: The new pilot program – initially set in Florida, New Jersey and California – aims to advance access to mental health care for uninsured populations.

In Brief

The United States

Around the World

  • In the past two weeks, Direct Relief has made 39 shipments to 30 partners in 20 countries, totaling $42.1 million in value and more than 221,000 pounds.
  • More than $660,000 in grants was distributed over the same two weeks.
  • A reproductive health and birthing clinic in the Philippines, funded by Direct Relief, has opened its doors.
  • FedEx wrote about its ongoing work with Direct Relief

Giving is Good Medicine

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