PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, Sept. 9, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Following the 7.2 magnitude earthquake that struck southwestern Haiti on August 14, 2021, the Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation has activated its disaster response in the country. In recognition of these humanitarian efforts, and those by other international contributors, the Embassy of Taiwan in Haiti, the Haitian Government, and the Overseas Engineering & Construction Company (OECC) hosted a Donation Ceremony at the Tzu Chi Haiti Warehouse in Port-au-Prince with special guests on Tuesday, September 7, 2021.
In attendance were His Excellency, the Prime Minister of the Republic of Haiti, Ariel Henry, as well as the Honorable Ambassador to Haiti from Taiwan, Richard Ku. Tzu Chi Haiti volunteers and Tzu Chi’s Haiti Earthquake Response Team, which includes members from New York and California, were also present.
The event acknowledged donations of 25 tons of humanitarian aid from the Taiwanese government, Tzu Chi, and the Taiwan Red Cross, including (but not limited to) oxygen concentrators, masks, protective suits, sleeping bags, dry rations, tents, tarpaulins, and medical kits. Some of these items will be distributed by Tzu Chi in Les Cayes as early as September 8, with other distributions slated to follow.
Accepting these donations on behalf of the people of Haiti, Prime Minister Ariel Henry expressed his gratitude: “Thank you so much. I know that Taiwan’s people came again for this disaster [which] happened in August. We really appreciate it, and I hope they continue to support us.”
Addressing security issues in terms of relief materials safely reaching the south from Port-au-Prince, he offered Tzu Chi volunteers reassurance: “I encourage Taiwan’s people to work closely with civil protection and our national police. I know it’s difficult in this time to travel to Les Cayes because the road is dangerous. My government will make sure you have all our support.”
Also donating relief materials on behalf of the government of Taiwan, Ambassador Ku shared the depth of Taiwan’s commitment to its friend and close ally, Haiti: “Taiwanese people have big hearts. [They are] always eager to help when they hear people get affected by natural disaster. Today, this donation ceremony is showing the great relationship between Taiwan and Haiti, and lets Haitian people know they are not alone.”
He also lauded Tzu Chi’s humanitarian efforts: “During critical situations, Tzu Chi is always the first to arrive. Additionally, Tzu Chi has been in Haiti for a long time and has gained trust from the locals, creating a very positive energy for the embassy to work with. We hope to use this positive energy to let our Haitian friends know, Taiwan has a friendly team in Haiti, ready to support with the warmest assistance at any time.”
Tzu Chi’s footprints of aid in Haiti began in 1998. Over the past decade, Tzu Chi has rebuilt four schools destroyed in the 2010 Haiti Earthquake, provided regular distributions of rice and essentials to impoverished families, and established a campus warehouse to store and organize relief supplies.
Learn more about our current efforts in Haiti at tzuchi.us/haiti. Then, make a contribution to the fundraiser, “Pathway to Hope: 2021 Haiti Earthquake Relief,” via…
- Website: donate.tzuchi.us/haiti
- Facebook: facebook.com/TzuChiUSA
- Mobile App: download Tzu Chi Connect for Android & iOS
- Check: Payable to “Tzu Chi” and mailed to the Tzu Chi Chapter nearest you. Visit tzuchi.us/offices to see the full list.
ABOUT TZU CHI USA
The Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation, also known as Tzu Chi USA, is a global non-profit humanitarian organization founded in 1966 by a Buddhist nun named Dharma Master Cheng Yen in Taiwan. Its missions of medicine, charity, education, and humanistic culture have brought relief to 126 countries and counting. In 1989, Tzu Chi USA was established and now has 62 offices across the US. The heart of Tzu Chi is embedded in its name: in Chinese, “tzu” means compassion and “chi,” relief.
Media Liaison: Anik Ghose
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SOURCE Tzu Chi USA