More than one week after the devastating earthquake in Ecuador, the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) and its partners are providing aid to hundreds of people, including food, water, medical equipment and supplies, water filters and purification tablets, solar panel lamps, and post-trauma kits for children. JDC’s assessment team, comprised of its veteran disaster relief expert/field medic and Latin American community development expert, is on the ground in Ecuador, deploying and coordinating JDC’s response as well as distributing food to quake victims in an effort organized by the President of the Jewish Community in Guayaquil. ‘While the headlines on the disaster in Ecuador have faded, our efforts to aid beleaguered earthquake victims and communities are critical as needs like shelter, food security, and access to income and education sharpen,’ said Mandie Winston, Director of JDC’s International Development Program ‘Our response is especially poignant at this time as it embodies Passover’s message to do all one can to alleviate great suffering.’ JDC joined the aid distribution operation organized by noted CEO and Guayaquil Jewish Community President Johnny Czarninski to distribute 800 food packages and water to scores of people living in San Isidro, badly hit by the quake. This food distribution will continue in the coming weeks. You can read more about JDC’s response in this blog by JDC’s team on the ground:
‘I am encouraged by the solidarity of the people of Ecuador and their willingness to help one another in this time of crisis,’ said Czarninski.
JDC’s Ecuador relief partners include the U.S.-based Afya Foundation; CADENA; and UNICEF. JDC’s disaster response and recovery efforts are made possible thanks to the generous support of the Jewish Federations as well as individual donors and foundations. JDC has provided immediate relief and long-term assistance to victims of natural and manmade disasters around the globe, including the Philippines, Haiti, Japan, and South Asia after the Indian Ocean Tsunami, and continues to operate programs designed to rebuild infrastructure and community life in disaster-stricken regions.