Do­na­tion overf low

Hur­ri­cane Matthew con­tri­bu­tions ex­ceed those for 2010 earth­quake – FFTP

Jamaica Gleaner - - NEWS - An­dré Poyser Staff Re­porter an­dre.poyser@glean­erjm.com

LO­CAL CHAR­ITY Food For The Poor has in­di­cated that there has been an out­pour­ing of sup­port from Ja­maicans for its ef­forts to de­liver re­lief to Haitians who were dis­placed af­ter Hur­ri­cane Matthew rav­aged the is­land ear­lier in the month.

Chair­man of Food For The Poor in Ja­maica An­drew Mah­food told The Gleaner that the or­gan­i­sa­tion has re­ceived $10 mil­lion dol­lars in goods and $5 mil­lion dol­lars in cash from in­di­vid­u­als and com­pa­nies.

“Al­ready, we have re­ceived much more this year than we did when Haiti had the big earth­quake,” he said, while pro­vid­ing an up­date on the do­na­tion drive launched by the char­ity af­ter the pas­sage of Hur­ri­cane Matthew.

Ac­cord­ing to Mah­food, the char­ity is cur­rently pre­par­ing con­tain­ers to be shipped to its of­fices in Haiti, from which they will be dis­trib­uted to those most af­fected by the hur­ri­cane.

“I think the most im­por­tant thing now is wa­ter, so we will be ship­ping out large sup­plies. We got a large do­na­tion of five con­tain­ers of bot­tled wa­ter from a pri­vate-sec­tor com­pany, and we are go­ing to pro­cure more bot­tled wa­ter as well as more tinned food,” he said.

AD­DI­TIONAL FUND­ING

Mah­food also dis­closed that a lo­cal pri­vate-sec­tor com­pany would be pro­vid­ing ad­di­tional funds to the re­lief ef­forts through a cam­paign that would see the com­pany match­ing funds through pro­ceeds from the sale of its prod­ucts.

New York-based Ja­maican banker Ger­ald Wight Jnr, for­merly of BCW Cap­i­tal, is also to pro­vide the char­ity with a siz­able do­na­tion through his net­work with the chair­man of Haiti’s only in­vest­ment bank. Wight yes­ter­day flew into Ja­maica to host lo­cal pri­vate­sec­tor in­ter­ests and of­fi­cials of the Haitian bank to kick-start fundrais­ing ef­forts.

Mah­food fur­ther pointed out that Food For The Poor was well placed to lead the re­lief and re­cov­ery ef­forts as it has been work­ing in Haiti for an ex­tended pe­riod and has built nu­mer­ous homes and schools since it set up op­er­a­tions there. Food For The Poor Haiti also feeds more than 200,000 Haitians each week.

From all in­di­ca­tions, it would ap­pear that Food For The Poor has be­come the de facto or­gan­i­sa­tion for the re­lief ef­forts from Ja­maica to Haiti. Even the Of­fice of Dis­as­ter Pre­pared­ness and Emer­gency Man­age­ment has been chan­nelling its as­sis­tance through the char­ity. It is for this rea­son that Mah­food has moved to as­sure Ja­maicans that the char­ity is a faith­ful ste­ward of what­ever do­na­tions it re­ceives.

“My fam­ily is as­so­ci­ated with Food For The Poor. We have very strong direc­tors on the board, and it’s those kind of peo­ple that are part of an or­gan­i­sa­tion that when we say we are go­ing to do some­thing, we do it. So when we say goods are go­ing to leave

Ja­maica and go to Haiti, if the pub­lic wants to see the bills of lad­ing and pic­tures of the goods be­ing de­liv­ered to the peo­ple in Haiti, they can be­cause we do this ev­ery day in Haiti,” he said.

AP

Love Manie Simeus, 12, holds a pic­ture of her­self wear­ing her school uni­form as she looks through a fam­ily photo al­bum in­side her pub­lic school, where she has taken shel­ter af­ter Hur­ri­cane Matthew hit the vil­lage of Mer­san, lo­cated in Camp-Per­rin, a district of Les Cayes, Haiti, on Mon­day.

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