Even as we prepare here, Hurricane Matthew is already hammering our neighboring countries, and has already claimed lives. USAID has deployed disaster response teams to Haiti, Jamaica, and the Bahamas. Those teams were deployed in advance of the storm’s arrival. And these disaster experts are actively monitoring the storm’s track in real time, communicating with officials on the ground in Jamaica, Haiti, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, the Bahamas, and Belize, to ensure that relief efforts are being coordinated if U.S. assistance is necessary.
USAID has also strategically pre-positioned emergency relief supplies, including shelter materials, blankets, hygiene kits, household items, and water purification equipment to ensure that they can be made available on short notice to communities that are directly affected by the storm. Many of these countries don’t have the resources that we do in this country to deal with a storm as severe as Hurricane Matthew. The United States stands ready to provide assistance to help people in those countries who are in need.
Americans who want to help can visit the Center for International Disaster Assistance at www.cidi.org to learn more.