Appeal launched to help those hit by Hurricane Irma

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The Scottish Catholic International Aid Fund has launched an appeal to help those in need

11th September 2017 by Gareth Jones 0 Comments

Scots are being asked to help those affected by a devastating hurricane.

The Scottish Catholic International Aid Fund (SCIAF) has launched an urgent appeal calling on people across Scotland to help some of the world’s poorest communities devastated by the onslaught of Hurricane Irma across islands in the Caribbean.

Islands have been devastated, homes destroyed and lives lost across the Caribbean after the massive hurricane hit last week.

The charity is already responding to the needs of people worst hit by the latest catastrophic Category Five hurricane and said it urgently need donations from Scotland to make sure they have access clean water, food and shelter in the critical hours after the storm.

Haiti, the poorest nation in the western hemisphere, is one of the areas badly affected by Hurricane Irma with floods and damage to infrastructure. It is among the most vulnerable islands bracing itself for yet another storm, Hurricane Jose, with winds of up to 120mph predicted, following in the path of Irma.

SCIAF’s head of fundraising and communications, Charlotte Hull, said: “We have launched an urgent hurricane appeal to galvanize support from Scotland as we work with partners to get vital aid like clean water, food, shelter and basic sanitation kits to those who desperately need it in the vital first few hours after the hurricane.

“We are hearing about devastation across most of the islands in the Caribbean. This is going to be a huge international effort to support people in need. If these people don’t get immediate clean water, food and shelter in the first few hours they run the risk of disease spreading which can make this disaster even worse."

Haiti has been identified as one of the areas of most need, having been hit with several disasters in recent years. 

Hull continued: “In Haiti, people have nothing and we have been helping poor communities get back on their feet and rebuild their homes after they were flattened in the earthquake in 2010 and last year’s hurricane. 

“A lot of the places where we work - Haiti in particular - are very rural and so we are struggling to get detail of the full extent of the situation because of the damage to communications and infrastructure.

“We need to make sure everyone understands the human impact of something like this and that we can all do our bit to help our brothers and sisters devastated by this latest hurricane and help them to build their resilience for when the next hurricane strikes.”

Members of the public can donate to SCIAF’s Hurricane Appeal online.