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Direct Relief Announces $3 Million Grant to Jamaica, Renewed Partnership as Hurricane Season Approaches



Speaker of Jamaica's House of Representatives Most Hon. Juliet Holness (right) and Minister of Health and Wellness, Hon. Dr. Christopher Tufton (center) meet with Direct Relief Chief Operating Officer Dr. Byron Scott at an event announcing $3 million to support Jamaica's health system. (Photo by Donald De La Haye)

KINGSTON, JAMAICA – Direct Relief this week announced a US$3 million grant to Jamaica as part of its ongoing commitment to bolstering resilience in the Caribbean region. This contribution, which will support the installation of a large solar energy system at a central primary pharmaceutical distribution facility, comes as part of the organization’s renewal of its ongoing partnership with the island nation, aimed at strengthening healthcare systems and infrastructure in the face of natural disasters and other emergencies.

Direct Relief staff met with members of Jamaica’s Ministry of Health and Wellness to tour the National Health Fund Pharmaceutical Distribution Facility and visit local health centers. A Memorandum of Understanding was also signed to continue the flow of medical aid and support to the nation’s health system.

“Past assistance given, as well as forthcoming aid, are testaments to the benefits good partnership can bring to an organization and to a country. Not only have we been greatly helped, but we are also thoroughly impressed by Direct Relief’s humanitarian efforts worldwide,” said Everton Anderson, CEO of the National Health Foundation.

Jamaica, like many other nations in the Caribbean, faces unique challenges in maintaining healthcare access, particularly in the wake of natural disasters such as hurricanes. Direct Relief’s grant seeks to address these challenges by supporting initiatives that enhance emergency preparedness, expand access to essential medical supplies and equipment, and fortify healthcare infrastructure.

Direct Relief has a long history of providing humanitarian assistance in Jamaica and across the Caribbean region. From responding to the devastating effects of natural disasters to supporting ongoing healthcare needs, Direct Relief has worked closely with local partners to deliver vital medical aid where it is needed most.

Dr. Byron Scott, Chief Operating Officer of Direct Relief, speaks in Jamaica on April 30, 2024, at a dedication of a medical warehouse for the National Health Fund. Direct Relief announced a $3 million commitment of funding to strengthen the country’s health system. (Photo by Donald De La Haye)

“Direct Relief is deeply privileged to support the country of Jamaica and local health providers, who are incredibly committed to high-quality care for their patients and their communities,” said Dr. Byron Scott, Chief Operating Officer of Direct Relief. “With the start of hurricane season weeks away, Direct Relief is committed to strengthening the health system and health services, including power resiliency as part of disaster preparedness.”

Over the two-day visit to Jamaica, Direct Relief staff met with the Minister of Health and Wellness, Dr. the Honorable Christopher Tufton, the Most Honorable Juliet Holness, who has led previous Jamaican delegations to overseas conferences with Direct Relief, and NHF Chief Executive Officer Everton Anderson, along with other NHF representatives. The group toured the NHF’s newly refurbished Warehouse, Drug Serv Greater Portmore, and visited local community centers.

The grant to Jamaica is part of Direct Relief’s broader efforts to strengthen healthcare systems and enhance emergency preparedness in vulnerable communities worldwide. Through strategic partnerships and targeted investments, Direct Relief continues to make a meaningful impact in improving health outcomes and saving lives.

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