American Red Cross Funding Waste-Collection Hotline in Haiti
WASHINGTON - The American Red Cross today announced $1.8 million in funding for a waste-collection hotline and removal network in Port-au-Prince to address a major sanitation problem in the Haitian capital.
The goal of the project is to improve solid-waste disposal, particularly in and around the many spontaneous settlements where people displaced by the January 12th earthquake are still living. The program will be implemented in partnership with Catholic Relief Services and Disaster Waste Recovery.
“This hotline and removal service will improve sanitation for many vulnerable people living in camps around Port-au-Prince,” said Ricardo Caivano, Country Representative for the American Red Cross in Haiti. “As the current cholera outbreak makes clear, it is vital to tackle health and sanitation issues in tandem.”
Haiti’s capital had a major problem with solid waste before the earthquake and that has been exacerbated since then. Trash and other waste is piled up in market areas, along main thoroughfares, and more recently within camps. This, in turn, creates breeding grounds for rodents, flies and mosquitos and increases the risk of communicable and water-borne diseases.
This project will establish a solid-waste collection network in certain underserved areas where private contractors and the government agency responsible for solid-waste collection will gather waste at designated areas and dispose of it in authorized governmental dumpsites.
A central clearing house (telephone and website access) for waste collection from camps will be created so registered community members, nonprofit organizations, and private contractors may request or provide services. Through this hotline, underserved communities will be linked with identified contractors within their commune to collect and haul waste to government approved dumpsites. The program will involve SMCRS -- the government agency responsible for waste collection – and recognizes that it will remain the principal waste-collection provider. It will also identify and coordinate with a cluster of other waste-collection contractors to serve areas where the government does not operate or has limited capacity.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation’s blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization — not a government agency — and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit www.redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.
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