Haiti Relief Update

January 14, 2010

Thursday, January 14, 2010 - The American Red Cross is sending money, supplies and staff to Haiti to support relief efforts after Tuesday’s earthquake, which caused catastrophic damage and loss of life.

The Red Cross is contributing an initial $1 million from the International Response Fund to support the relief operation and has opened its warehouse in Panama to provide tarps, mosquito nets and cooking sets for approximately 5,000 families.

In addition to Red Cross staff already in Haiti, six disaster management specialists are being deployed to the disaster zone to help coordinate relief efforts. At this time, the Red Cross is only deploying volunteers specially trained to manage international emergency operations.

How to support the relief efforts

There has been an outpouring of support from the public. To help, you can make an unrestricted donation to the International Response Fund at redcross.org or by calling 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767). You may also help by texting "Haiti" to 90999 to make a $10 donation – added to your phone bill – to the Red Cross through an effort backed by the U.S. State Department. Funds will go to support American Red Cross relief efforts in Haiti.  

Haiti and the need for blood

To date, there have been no requests for blood products from the government of Haiti. However, some patients at an affected facility in Haiti have been moved to a Guantanamo Bay hospital, and the Armed Services Blood Program has asked both the Red Cross and Florida Blood Services to provide support for those patients. In addition, the Red Cross has sent a shipment of blood products to the United Nations Mission in Haiti.

The Red Cross is meeting any requests for blood due to this tragedy through current blood supplies. Thank you to Red Cross blood donors for ensuring the Red Cross was prepared. You can help ensure that blood supplies continue remain sufficient for all patients. Click here or call 1-800-GIVE-LIFE (1-800-448-3543) for more information to schedule your donation appointment.

For more information, please visit redcross.org and newsroom.redcross.org.