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MEDAIR | news

No. 2  | 2013 | medair.org

Rising from Disaster Haiti: A Spirit of Resilience Madagascar: Peace of Mind


© Medair/Florance Paul

VISION

DISASTER RESILIENCE

Medair se bat pour aider les plus démunis à survivre aux crises les plus graves, à se relever dans la dignité et à développer les moyens de se construire un avenir meilleur : c’est ce mélange d’urgence et d’humanité qui m’a motivé à rejoindre Medair récemment. Après des années passées dans la branche des médias, quel changement ! Un autre univers, certes ; mais sensibiliser le public aux besoins des personnes fragilisées, c’est également une activité médiatique ! En prenant mes nouvelles fonctions, j’ai découvert les multiples facettes du travail de Medair, et une de mes nombreuses questions était : En cas d’urgence, quels facteurs décident Medair à intervenir ? En fait, notre équipe opérationnelle est constamment confrontée à ce terrible dilemme. Lorsqu’une crise se déclenche, la décision d’agir doit être prise immédiatement. Même si notre cœur nous pousse à venir en aide à toutes les victimes de crises, la décision d’intervenir ne peut être prise à la légère. J’ai donc choisi de vous emmener aujourd’hui dans les coulisses de Medair pour vous montrer comment sont prises les décisions nous lançons une intervention d’urgence. Nous nous rendrons au cœur de la tourmente – là où des familles luttent pour échapper à la mort, là où, grâce à votre soutien, nous les épaulons à chaque pas sur le chemin d’un avenir meilleur.

diSaSter Gregory Pasche Directeur, Relations donateurs et Communication

4

CRISIS BRIEFING

Disasters on the Rise

6

HAITI

A Spirit of Resilience

8

MADAGASCAR

Rising from Disaster

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Sources : 1. Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation. 2007. SDC Guidelines on Disaster Risk Reduction. 2. UK Department for International Development (DFID). 2011. Defining Disaster Resilience: A DFID Approach Paper. 3. European Commission. 2012. The EU Approach to Resilence: Learning From Food Security Crises. 4. World Bank. 2012. The Sendai Report: Managing Disaster Risks for a Resilient Future. 5. USAID. 2012. Building Resilience to Recurrent Crisis. 6. ACF International. 2011. Disaster Risk Management for Insecure Contexts. Funding Partners: Haiti: Swiss Solidarity, United States Agency for International Development, Däster-Schild Foundation (CH) Madagascar: Swiss Solidarity, EC Directorate-General for Development and Cooperation – EuropeAid, EC Directorate-General for Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection Cover Photo: A girl stands in front of the ruins of her school in Madagascar, destroyed by Cyclone Giovanna. Medair provided a cash distribution to help people in her village rebuild. © Medair/Véronique André

PROGRAMMES

Disaster Risk Management Around the Globe

In 2012, Haiti was hit by two powerful storms, Isaac and Sandy, destroying thousands of homes.

Sandy, I was scared that the roof might fly away, but after the strong winds passed, the house was intact. I won’t be scared of any hurricanes in the future because the house is built to stand,

MEDAIR

1024 Ecublens Switzerland Tél: 021 694 35 35 suisse@medair.org medair.org

When Isaac passed, and then

reSilience 100 % of Medair’s 3,490 disaster-resilient shelters and homes safely withstood the storms.

even when there are heavy rains and strong winds like Sandy. – Madenièse Valentin, 73, who received assistance from Medair to make her home disaster-resilient. Photo : A Haitian woman stands on the front porch of her Medair home. medair.org

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July 2013

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Medair

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CRISIS BRIEFING

CRISIS BRIEFING

Disasters on the Rise

Disaster Risk Management

More disasters are happening around the world—and more people are affected by them—than ever before.

With disasters on the rise, we need to help communities strengthen themselves and so enable them to be more resilient to future threats.

2011 was the costliest year of disasters on record, with estimated global losses of USD 380 billion. Hundreds of millions of people are affected by disaster every year, and experts predict that the frequency and intensity of disasters will continue to increase in the coming decades.

disaster risk management uses a broad range of interventions to strengthen local resilience before, during, and after a disaster strikes.

WHY ARE DI SA STER S ON THE RI SE? Population Growth

Rising population in disaster-prone regions: coastal areas and flood plains.

Climate Change

Increasingly extreme temperatures causing more chaotic weather patterns: severe storms, floods, and droughts.

Environmental Degradation

Escalating disaster damage due to loss of vital ecosystem buffers: soil, forests, vegetation, and mangrove swamps.

1

B EFO RE PREPARATION AND PREVENTION

2

Work with local stakeholders to assess and reduce risks Early warning systems, evacuation plans, disaster simulations, emergency supplies Safe water and latrines

DISASTERS BRING CHAOS, DEATH, AND DESTRUCTION. Survivors search for safe water, food, shelter, and access to health care. Conditions are ripe for disease. Disasters destroy people’s homes, tear apart communities, and lead to economic ruin. Families take on debts they may never recover from.

COMMUNITIES NEED TO PREPARE FOR DISASTERS TO WITHSTAND THEIR IMPACT. In the past 30 years, low-income countries accounted for just nine percent of disasters, but suffered 48 percent of the fatalities.

9% 48%

disasters

fatalities

CONFLICT MAKES THE IMPACT OF NATURAL DISASTERS MUCH WORSE. Confl ict creates a spiral of insecurity that leads to greater disaster vulnerability and fuels even more confl ict. Assessing the vulnerability of a community is about assessing natural hazards and also human threats such as confl ict and deforestation.

“The world is facing an unprecedented scale of disasters.” – Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation

4

Medair

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July 2013

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medair.org

Drought-resistant crops, protection of livestock and agriculture

D U RIN G LIFE-SAVING RESCUE AND RELIEF

Emergency shelter, health care, nutrition, water, sanitation, urgent road repair, food assistance

3

RECOVERY: BOUNCE BACK BETTER

Cash distributions or cash-forwork to meet urgent needs Disaster-resilient reconstruction of homes, roads, infrastructure Rehabilitation of water points Health and nutrition services Capacity building of local NGOs Income-generating activities and livelihood stimulus

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Disaster-resilient construction and refuge houses Access to health care, vaccinations, and health, hygiene, and nutrition education

AF TER

Everything under

1

B E FO R E PREPAR ATION AND PREVENTION

Natural resources management

“Disaster risk management requires that we assess the exposure of individuals, households, and communities to natural and human threats. We must understand a community’s unique vulnerabilities and capacities to effectively work alongside them and help strengthen their resilience.” – William Anderson, Medair Programmes Manager

medair.org

|

July 2013

|

Medair

5


CRISIS BRIEFING

CRISIS BRIEFING

Disasters on the Rise

Disaster Risk Management

More disasters are happening around the world—and more people are affected by them—than ever before.

With disasters on the rise, we need to help communities strengthen themselves and so enable them to be more resilient to future threats.

2011 was the costliest year of disasters on record, with estimated global losses of USD 380 billion. Hundreds of millions of people are affected by disaster every year, and experts predict that the frequency and intensity of disasters will continue to increase in the coming decades.

disaster risk management uses a broad range of interventions to strengthen local resilience before, during, and after a disaster strikes.

WHY ARE DI SA STER S ON THE RI SE? Population Growth

Rising population in disaster-prone regions: coastal areas and flood plains.

Climate Change

Increasingly extreme temperatures causing more chaotic weather patterns: severe storms, floods, and droughts.

Environmental Degradation

Escalating disaster damage due to loss of vital ecosystem buffers: soil, forests, vegetation, and mangrove swamps.

1

B EFO RE PREPARATION AND PREVENTION

2

Work with local stakeholders to assess and reduce risks Early warning systems, evacuation plans, disaster simulations, emergency supplies Safe water and latrines

DISASTERS BRING CHAOS, DEATH, AND DESTRUCTION. Survivors search for safe water, food, shelter, and access to health care. Conditions are ripe for disease. Disasters destroy people’s homes, tear apart communities, and lead to economic ruin. Families take on debts they may never recover from.

COMMUNITIES NEED TO PREPARE FOR DISASTERS TO WITHSTAND THEIR IMPACT. In the past 30 years, low-income countries accounted for just nine percent of disasters, but suffered 48 percent of the fatalities.

9% 48%

disasters

fatalities

CONFLICT MAKES THE IMPACT OF NATURAL DISASTERS MUCH WORSE. Confl ict creates a spiral of insecurity that leads to greater disaster vulnerability and fuels even more confl ict. Assessing the vulnerability of a community is about assessing natural hazards and also human threats such as confl ict and deforestation.

“The world is facing an unprecedented scale of disasters.” – Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation

4

Medair

|

July 2013

|

medair.org

Drought-resistant crops, protection of livestock and agriculture

D U RIN G LIFE-SAVING RESCUE AND RELIEF

Emergency shelter, health care, nutrition, water, sanitation, urgent road repair, food assistance

3

RECOVERY: BOUNCE BACK BETTER

Cash distributions or cash-forwork to meet urgent needs Disaster-resilient reconstruction of homes, roads, infrastructure Rehabilitation of water points Health and nutrition services Capacity building of local NGOs Income-generating activities and livelihood stimulus

+

Disaster-resilient construction and refuge houses Access to health care, vaccinations, and health, hygiene, and nutrition education

AF TER

Everything under

1

B E FO R E PREPAR ATION AND PREVENTION

Natural resources management

“Disaster risk management requires that we assess the exposure of individuals, households, and communities to natural and human threats. We must understand a community’s unique vulnerabilities and capacities to effectively work alongside them and help strengthen their resilience.” – William Anderson, Medair Programmes Manager

medair.org

|

July 2013

|

Medair

5


IMPACT

IMPACT

Haiti: A Spirit of Resilience

© Medair/Janneke de Kruijf

Haiti’s earthquake was one of the deadliest in history for a reason. The country was full of poorly built masonry buildings that collapsed when the earth shook. “It’s pretty much a fact that the large majority of death and damage due to disasters, such as the 2010 earthquake, can be avoided,” says Thomas Jardim, Medair Shelter Manager. Haiti has been plagued by outbreaks of cholera and diarrhoeal disease, but these diseases can be prevented when people have access to protected water sources and sanitation facilities and adhere to good hygiene practices. Tragically, too many communities do not. In October, just two months after Tropical Storm Isaac wreaked havoc, Hurricane Sandy lashed Haiti for three straight days, bringing fierce winds and heavy rainfall that caused massive floods. Water roared down the mountainsides, eroding away roads and valuable cropland and destroying homes and crops. 6

Medair

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July 2013

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medair.org

“The flooding caused by Hurricanes Isaac and Sandy painfully showed the problem of the deforestation and denuding of hillsides in Haiti,” said Johan ten Hoeve, head of Medair’s Haiti programme. “There was nothing to slow the water down. To prevent these kinds of destructive flash floods, you need to retain water higher up in the mountains and give it time to infiltrate the soil.” As a disaster-prone country, Haiti must undeniably become more resilient to the hazards it faces. What can’t be denied, however, is the immense resilience found in the spirit of the Haitian people, who continue to pick themselves up from the ruins and start again. “After the earthquake, my house was destroyed,” said Clemente Aubrand, a mother of 10 in Côtes- de-Fer. “Now comes Sandy and all my harvest is destroyed too—the trees, the fruit. Everything is destroyed. But I am not sad. I know there are people who are more vulnerable than me.”

“The houses have good structural integrity and fit well with the local environment and culture, while also allowing residents to provide their own design solutions and finishing touches. Medair has acquired an undeniable expertise in reconstruction techniques that work well in rural Haiti.” – Béatrice Boyer, Team Leader (Urban Architect), le Groupe URD, independent experts mandated by Swiss Solidarity to perform an external assessment of the quality of Medair’s construction work in Haiti.

© Medair/Janneke de Kruijf

“Medair’s shelter programme has been hugely successful at adapting their construction designs to meet the needs of the local communities. The Medair houses are well-built and wellappreciated by the homeowners.

Haiti is regularly devastated by severe disasters. Earthquakes, hurricanes, disease outbreaks, massive flooding—calamitous events that leave a path of death and destruction in their wake. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

(Left) Sansélie Jacotin’s home withstood Hurricane Sandy without damage. (Above) Residents work to repair the roads that Sandy washed away.

One of the regions hardest hit was Côtes-de-Fer, a remote mountainous area dotted with small villages where Medair works to improve shelters and water access. Our team rapidly assessed the region and found massive damage to crops, homes, and water points, and roads so severely eroded that communities were effectively cut off from the outside world.

builders who can build houses resistant to hurricanes and earthquakes,” said 69-year-old Sansélie Jacotin.

In response, Medair distributed water treatment tablets and supported home and road repairs through a cash-forwork programme that allowed families to buy food and avoid taking on unsustainable debt.

“The day Sandy hit, I saw the water running down and I was scared that my house would be washed away,” said 64-year-old Zabulon Félix. “These check dams will reduce the strength of the water flowing down. The work Medair is doing to protect the land gives us hope.”

We also sought to build long-term resilience in Côtesde-Fer so that future disasters would not have the same destructive impact. “Whether you are raising capacity in construction techniques or combating deforestation, it is crucial to focus efforts on reducing and mitigating risks for future generations,” said Thomas.

Medair is also repairing and protecting 45 water points to withstand future floods and running a cash-for-work project to repair roads. The project includes flood-control structures such as drainage ditches and check dams so that heavy rains won’t be able to destroy the roads again.

With this in mind, Medair is supporting the repair and rebuilding of 200 disaster-resilient homes and shelters for the most vulnerable families in the region, including training for local builders on safe construction techniques. “After Medair leaves Côtes-de-Fer, we will not only have strong houses, but also highly skilled

medair.org

|

July 2013

|

Medair

7


IMPACT

IMPACT

Haiti: A Spirit of Resilience

© Medair/Janneke de Kruijf

Haiti’s earthquake was one of the deadliest in history for a reason. The country was full of poorly built masonry buildings that collapsed when the earth shook. “It’s pretty much a fact that the large majority of death and damage due to disasters, such as the 2010 earthquake, can be avoided,” says Thomas Jardim, Medair Shelter Manager. Haiti has been plagued by outbreaks of cholera and diarrhoeal disease, but these diseases can be prevented when people have access to protected water sources and sanitation facilities and adhere to good hygiene practices. Tragically, too many communities do not. In October, just two months after Tropical Storm Isaac wreaked havoc, Hurricane Sandy lashed Haiti for three straight days, bringing fierce winds and heavy rainfall that caused massive floods. Water roared down the mountainsides, eroding away roads and valuable cropland and destroying homes and crops. 6

Medair

|

July 2013

|

medair.org

“The flooding caused by Hurricanes Isaac and Sandy painfully showed the problem of the deforestation and denuding of hillsides in Haiti,” said Johan ten Hoeve, head of Medair’s Haiti programme. “There was nothing to slow the water down. To prevent these kinds of destructive flash floods, you need to retain water higher up in the mountains and give it time to infiltrate the soil.” As a disaster-prone country, Haiti must undeniably become more resilient to the hazards it faces. What can’t be denied, however, is the immense resilience found in the spirit of the Haitian people, who continue to pick themselves up from the ruins and start again. “After the earthquake, my house was destroyed,” said Clemente Aubrand, a mother of 10 in Côtes- de-Fer. “Now comes Sandy and all my harvest is destroyed too—the trees, the fruit. Everything is destroyed. But I am not sad. I know there are people who are more vulnerable than me.”

“The houses have good structural integrity and fit well with the local environment and culture, while also allowing residents to provide their own design solutions and finishing touches. Medair has acquired an undeniable expertise in reconstruction techniques that work well in rural Haiti.” – Béatrice Boyer, Team Leader (Urban Architect), le Groupe URD, independent experts mandated by Swiss Solidarity to perform an external assessment of the quality of Medair’s construction work in Haiti.

© Medair/Janneke de Kruijf

“Medair’s shelter programme has been hugely successful at adapting their construction designs to meet the needs of the local communities. The Medair houses are well-built and wellappreciated by the homeowners.

Haiti is regularly devastated by severe disasters. Earthquakes, hurricanes, disease outbreaks, massive flooding—calamitous events that leave a path of death and destruction in their wake. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

(Left) Sansélie Jacotin’s home withstood Hurricane Sandy without damage. (Above) Residents work to repair the roads that Sandy washed away.

One of the regions hardest hit was Côtes-de-Fer, a remote mountainous area dotted with small villages where Medair works to improve shelters and water access. Our team rapidly assessed the region and found massive damage to crops, homes, and water points, and roads so severely eroded that communities were effectively cut off from the outside world.

builders who can build houses resistant to hurricanes and earthquakes,” said 69-year-old Sansélie Jacotin.

In response, Medair distributed water treatment tablets and supported home and road repairs through a cash-forwork programme that allowed families to buy food and avoid taking on unsustainable debt.

“The day Sandy hit, I saw the water running down and I was scared that my house would be washed away,” said 64-year-old Zabulon Félix. “These check dams will reduce the strength of the water flowing down. The work Medair is doing to protect the land gives us hope.”

We also sought to build long-term resilience in Côtesde-Fer so that future disasters would not have the same destructive impact. “Whether you are raising capacity in construction techniques or combating deforestation, it is crucial to focus efforts on reducing and mitigating risks for future generations,” said Thomas.

Medair is also repairing and protecting 45 water points to withstand future floods and running a cash-for-work project to repair roads. The project includes flood-control structures such as drainage ditches and check dams so that heavy rains won’t be able to destroy the roads again.

With this in mind, Medair is supporting the repair and rebuilding of 200 disaster-resilient homes and shelters for the most vulnerable families in the region, including training for local builders on safe construction techniques. “After Medair leaves Côtes-de-Fer, we will not only have strong houses, but also highly skilled

medair.org

|

July 2013

|

Medair

7


IMPACT

IMPACT

Madagascar: Rising from Disaster

Disaster Risk Management Around the Globe © Medair/Aurélie Grisel

Cyclones are a fact of life in Madagascar. Frequent storms bring high winds and flooding that leave a trail of destruction: drownings, devastated homes, ruined crops, contaminated water, and outbreaks of disease.

Communities can’t prevent cyclones, but they can reduce their impact by being prepared and taking precautions. Medair delivers a comprehensive disaster risk management (DRM) programme in Madagascar that assesses vulnerabilities and responds accordingly—before, during, and after cyclones strike. During Emergencies: When cyclones hit, we rapidly disinfect contaminated wells and distribute water and hygiene kits that reduce the risk of disease.

Before and After: Medair helps strengthen communities for the day the next disaster strikes. Early warning systems, cyclone simulations, emergency plans Cyclone refuge houses Disaster-resilient construction training DRM mentorship for communities, local committees, and government Resilience-building education Post-disaster cash distributions for shelter Flood-protected water points Latrines and hygiene promotion

“Madagascar is the most vulnerable of any African country to cyclone disasters. Making a cyclone-resistant house in a country annually hit by cyclones is a good investment.” – Alain Rakotovao, coordinator of ICPM, a DRM consortium in Madagascar

© Medair/Phil Moore

D.R. Congo: To prevent the spread of deadly disease, Medair is vaccinating thousands of children who have been displaced from their homes by conflict.

– District Chief Rakotozafy, Ambodinmandrorofo village

© Medair/Johan ten Hoeve

Chief Rakotozafy (left) has more peace of mind thanks to Medair’s DRM work.

“Medair has achieved a lot of work in the District of Maroantsetra, but what touches me in particular is how they work on the minds of people. Medair has convinced the villagers to use the refuge house and take care of their property. They have made people aware of ways to prepare for disasters. For this we are thankful.”

© Medair/Stella Chetham

© Medair/Aurélie Grisel

“Now that we have this refuge house in our village, we have more peace of mind. What a privilege for us to have it. The presence of Medair, making this house a refuge with us, has really changed our lives.”

Somalia/Somaliland: To secure renewable water supplies, Medair is helping drought-prone communities rebuild rainwater reservoirs—many of which were destroyed during times of conflict.

Afghanistan: Medair is assisting communities with land and water management projects to reduce flooding, increase water infiltration and groundwater recharge, and decrease the impact of future droughts. medair.org

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July 2013

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Medair

9


IMPACT

IMPACT

Madagascar: Rising from Disaster

Disaster Risk Management Around the Globe © Medair/Aurélie Grisel

Cyclones are a fact of life in Madagascar. Frequent storms bring high winds and flooding that leave a trail of destruction: drownings, devastated homes, ruined crops, contaminated water, and outbreaks of disease.

Communities can’t prevent cyclones, but they can reduce their impact by being prepared and taking precautions. Medair delivers a comprehensive disaster risk management (DRM) programme in Madagascar that assesses vulnerabilities and responds accordingly—before, during, and after cyclones strike. During Emergencies: When cyclones hit, we rapidly disinfect contaminated wells and distribute water and hygiene kits that reduce the risk of disease.

Before and After: Medair helps strengthen communities for the day the next disaster strikes. Early warning systems, cyclone simulations, emergency plans Cyclone refuge houses Disaster-resilient construction training DRM mentorship for communities, local committees, and government Resilience-building education Post-disaster cash distributions for shelter Flood-protected water points Latrines and hygiene promotion

“Madagascar is the most vulnerable of any African country to cyclone disasters. Making a cyclone-resistant house in a country annually hit by cyclones is a good investment.” – Alain Rakotovao, coordinator of ICPM, a DRM consortium in Madagascar

© Medair/Phil Moore

D.R. Congo: To prevent the spread of deadly disease, Medair is vaccinating thousands of children who have been displaced from their homes by conflict.

– District Chief Rakotozafy, Ambodinmandrorofo village

© Medair/Johan ten Hoeve

Chief Rakotozafy (left) has more peace of mind thanks to Medair’s DRM work.

“Medair has achieved a lot of work in the District of Maroantsetra, but what touches me in particular is how they work on the minds of people. Medair has convinced the villagers to use the refuge house and take care of their property. They have made people aware of ways to prepare for disasters. For this we are thankful.”

© Medair/Stella Chetham

© Medair/Aurélie Grisel

“Now that we have this refuge house in our village, we have more peace of mind. What a privilege for us to have it. The presence of Medair, making this house a refuge with us, has really changed our lives.”

Somalia/Somaliland: To secure renewable water supplies, Medair is helping drought-prone communities rebuild rainwater reservoirs—many of which were destroyed during times of conflict.

Afghanistan: Medair is assisting communities with land and water management projects to reduce flooding, increase water infiltration and groundwater recharge, and decrease the impact of future droughts. medair.org

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July 2013

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Medair

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DONATE TODAY

A Life-Saving Investment Prevention and Preparedness

Disaster risk management helps address the root causes that make someone vulnerable to disaster. DRM saves lives and strengthens communities. It’s also a good investment: Funding disaster preparation and prevention is at least four times more cost-effective than funding a disaster response.

3.6 %

Reconstruction

24.8 %

Why then does only a tiny fraction of global disaster funding get invested in preparation and prevention? From 1989 to 2009, less than four percent of global funding went to preparation and prevention, while the vast majority of donor funding went to emergency response and reconstruction. With disasters on the rise, that needs to change.

Emergency Response

69.9 %

Source: Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR) Disaster Aid Tracking Database. Note: Figures are constant USD 2009.

Give your hand to those struck down by disaster. Give them the strength they need to stand and face the storm.

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Medair

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medair.org

© Medair/Andrew Robinson

Give today at medair.org


© Medair/Florance Paul

We are in the hurricane season now but I have peace of mind. Medair built a solid house for me and my family. I am confident that the house will resist strong winds so I am not worried about hurricanes anymore. — Lorcia Jean, mother of 10, recipient of a disaster-resilient home in Haiti

Your gift gives families the strength to face disasters with courage. Join our worldwide team of supporters today at medair.org ! A message from the Syrian Crisis team: “Shukran” is a word that Medair’s teams in Lebanon and Jordan hear every day. It means “thank you” in Arabic. We hear it from fathers and mothers for improving the water-resistance of their shelters. We hear it from grandparents and grandchildren for the blankets and mattresses that help keep them warm.

MN1302-EN

Shukran is a word we love to hear because it shows we are making an important difference in the lives of vulnerable Syrian families. It is a word we want to share with you, our donors, because it is your gifts that have made it all possible. From the bottom of our hearts, shukran!


Medair News August