ALERT: PADF is responding to the earthquake in Ecuador
 

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Respond to Natural Disasters


Natural disasters and humanitarian crises can devastate communities. PADF strives to lessen the impact by improving disaster mitigation, preparedness, and response.

When natural disasters and humanitarian crises strike, communities are often devastated and left vulnerable, having little access to some of life's essentials, such as food, clean water, shelter, and basic services. While they must deal with the tragic loss of human life and property, they also have to face the uncertainty of seeing their livelihoods destroyed or severely affected.

The increasing number and severity of natural disasters and humanitarian crisis in the Americas, combined at times with growing civil instability, demonstrate that the need for disaster interventions will continue to grow.  As part of the Inter-American Committee on Natural Disaster Reduction, PADF is charged with mobilizing corporate and private contributions, and public sector grants, to support disaster preparedness and mitigation, emergency responses and , and to  implement disaster rehabilitation and reconstruction programs.  

PADF works in alliance with the Association of American Chambers of Commerce in Latin America (AACCLA) and its member national AmChams and their corporate members to respond to national disasters in individual Latin American and Caribbean countries to build local capacity for preparedness, mitigation and emergency relief.  The Foundation also partners with Hispanic and Caribbean hometown associations, civic groups such as Rotary Clubs, foundations and individual donors to rapidly channel resources to where they are needed most. Each time, PADF works through local non-governmental organizations and communities and in close coordination with national disaster authorities in LAC countries and their Permanent Mission to the Organization of American States.

PADF strives to lessen the impact of disasters and crises by:    

  • Preparing for Disasters
  • Providing Emergency Relief
  • Assisting Disaster Recovery, Reconstruction, and Mitigation
  • Strengthening Community Responses to Natural Disasters
  • Supporting the Inter-American Committee for Disaster Reduction
  • Aiding victims of humanitarian crises

Preparing for Disasters

PADF continues to promote the principles and good practices associated with disaster preparedness, mitigation and risk reduction in all its work, especially through its Disaster Management Alliance (DMA). This unique regional platform, established in 2004, continues to serve as a vehicle to associate and focus the public and private sectors on disaster management issues, while promoting best practices throughout the region.

Providing Emergency Relief

PADF’s network of partners, including 23 American Chambers of Commerce and Organization of American States offices throughout the Americas, provides hemispheric-wide coverage during disasters. Working with the private sector, non-profit organizations and other entities, PADF distributes, monitors and ensures that relief supplies reach beneficiaries in an effective and timely manner. With the support of these partners, and through agreements with transportation companies, PADF moves emergency shelter packages and other supplies with very short notice. These efforts are enhanced by PADF’s close relationship with the OAS, which provides greater access to government authorities, translating into quicker and greater support and better on-the-ground responses.

Assisting Disaster Recovery, Reconstruction, and Mitigation

After immediate relief efforts are mobilized and implemented, countries often need support in reconstructing municipal buildings, schools and other infrastructure. PADF works closely with municipal leaders, community organizations, the private sector and civil defense agencies to identify the highest priorities and deliver resources with the greatest positive impact.

Strengthening Community Responses to Natural Disasters

PADF believes in the full participation of local communities and affected populations in relief programs, such as community-based early flood alert systems and other local preparedness planning and exercises. This approach complements the impact of a response, as it helps countries build public-private partnerships that enhance speedy responses and reconstruction and ensure greater coordination of assistance at the community level.

Supporting the Inter-American Committee for Natural Disaster Reduction

PADF actively supports the Inter-American Committee on Natural Disaster Reduction (IACNDR), a forum established by the OAS General Assembly. IACNDR comprises many leading hemispheric organizations. Its primary purpose is to analyze issues related to natural and other disasters, including the prevention and mitigation of their effect, in coordination with OAS member states; competent national, regional and international organizations and non-governmental organizations. IACNDR also seeks to strengthen hemispheric actions to achieve maximum international cooperation in support of national and or regional efforts for timely prevention, preparedness, early warning, response, vulnerability reduction, emergency care, mitigation, rehabilitation and reconstruction.

Aiding victims of humanitarian crises

For decades, PADF has responded to most of the hemisphere’s major natural disasters and humanitarian crises. In its role as the OAS developmental and relief arm, PADF is also called upon at times to respond to other humanitarian crises such as assisting displaced persons in Colombia, demobilized ex-combatants in Central America, refugees fleeing civil unrest, victims of human trafficking and abuse, disabled citizens and excluded minorities such as Afro-descendent and indigenous communities and others.

Chronology of PADF Natural Disaster Responses: 1962-2015

PADF has had over 50 years of experience responding to natural disasters in Latin America and the Caribbean. Below is a chronological listing of those responses.

Year    

Disaster   

PADF Response

2013

Disaster Preparedness Projects funded by ROC  (Taiwan)  

Haiti Southeast Department, border regions of Dominican Republic, Honduras, etc.

2012

Regional Disaster Assistance 

Republic of China (Taiwan) and PADF sign multi-year agreement for regional disaster assistance and reconstruction

2011-2012               

Floods in Colombia, Panama & Caribbean Basin countries including Central America

 

Humanitarian supplies, cash grants for local purchases of emergency commodities and rebuilding of schools.

2011

Hurricane in St. Lucia

Cash grant for school rehabilitation

2011

Hurricane Irene in Bahamas

Supplies for roof repairs

2010-2012

Floods in Colombia

Cash grants to communities impacted by floods to rebuild infrastructure and rehabilitate micro-enterprises

2011

Floods in Rio de Janeiro

Funding for local purchases of humanitarian supplies in partnership with local NGO Viva Rio and Caterpillar. 

  2010-2012            

Earthquake & Tsunami in Chile

Emergency shelter packages, donations of hospital equipment, grants to fishing villages impacted by earthquake & tsunami

2010-2012            

Earthquake in Port-au-Prince, Haiti

Relief supplies, opening of humanitarian corridor between Santo Domingo and Port-au-Prince, food and bottle water shipments, technical assistance for relief efforts and planning, emergency employment, rubble removal and program of home repairs totaling over $25 million.

2010

Flooding in Bolivia

Emergency shelter packages & medical equipment.

2010

Hurricane Tomas in St. Lucia

Cash grant for school rehabilitation

2010

Tropical Storm Agatha in Guatemala

Emergency relief supplies

2010

Floods in Colombia and Panama

Emergency relief supplies

2010

Floods in Peru

Emergency relief supplies

2009

Tropical Storm Ida in El Salvador

Emergency relief supplies, Emergency shelter package, and cash grant for school rehabilitation

2009

Fire at hospital in Saint Lucia

Shipment of hospital equipment

2009

Drought in Guatemala

Shipment of food containers

2010

Tropical Storm Agatha in Guatemala

Emergency relief supplies

2010

Floods in Colombia and Panama

Emergency relief supplies

2010

Floods in Peru

Emergency relief supplies

2009

Tropical Storm Ida in El Salvador

Emergency relief supplies, Emergency shelter package, and cash grant for school rehabilitation

2009

Fire at hospital in Saint Lucia

Shipment of hospital equipment

2009

Drought in Guatemala

Shipment of food containers

2009

Flooding in Brazil

Emergency relief supplies  and cash grant for home repairs

2009

Flooding in Colombia

Emergency relief supplies

2009

Earthquake in Costa Rica

Cash grant to build  housing

2008-13

Caribbean Basin Disaster Prevention & Preparation (South-South cooperation)

Funding for making available Colombian technical advisors in disaster prevention/preparedness to Caribbean and Central American countries

2008

Flooding in Panama

Emergency shelter package and cash grant for school rehabilitation

2008

Hurricane in Dominican Republic

Emergency shelter package

2008

Flooding in Honduras

Emergency relief supplies

2008

Hurricane Gustav in Haiti, DR, Jamaica, Cuba

Emergency relief supplies to Haiti, DR, Jamaica; rebuilding  materials/ humanitarian supplies to Cuba

2008

Hurricanes Ike & Hanna in Turks & Caicos

Emergency relief supplies

2008

Tropical Storm Fay, Hurricanes Gustav, Hanna and Ike in Haiti

Emergency shelter package, medical supplies, and grant for school construction

2008

Flooding in Surinam & Belize

Emergency rebuilding supplies & hand tools for Surinam.  Grant for agricultural rehabilitation in

2008

Flooding in Coastal Ecuador

Emergency shelter packages and relief supplies with local NGOs & OAS office.

2007

Tropical Storms Olga and Noel in Dominican Republic and Haiti

Emergency relief supplies and shelter package

2007

Hurricane Dean in Dominica

Cash grant for seeds to farmers

2007

Hurricane Dean in Jamaica

Cash grant for agricultural recovery project

2007

Hurricane Dean in Haiti

Emergency relief supplies and cash grant for agricultural recovery project

2007

Floods in Haiti

Emergency relief supplies

2007

Hurricane Felix in Nicaragua

Emergency relief supplies

2007

Earthquake in Southern Peru

Provision of emergency shelter package

2007-08

Floods in Central America

Emergency relief supplies, food, and cash grants to rebuild schools.

2004-10   

Regional Disaster Preparedness and Training—establishment of Disaster Preparedness Committees in American Chambers in Colombia, Costa Rica, Honduras, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, with additional projects with AmChams in other countries such as El Salvador.  

Disaster Management Alliance (DMA) with Am Chambers of Commerce in Latin America and the Caribbean  

2004

Grenada Hurricane

Emergency Shelter Packages & medical equipment

2003

Santa Fe Floods in Argentina

Emergency relief supplies, medical equipment, ambulance with Massalin Particulares (Philip Morris Subsidary in Argentina).

2001-04

Earthquake in El Salvador

Emergency Shelter Packages & Rebuilding Schools in partnerships with Texaco, Citibank, Kodak, AmCham, Diaspora groups in U.S.

2000s

Regional Disaster Assistance

The Association for American Chambers of Commerce in Latin America (AACCLA) and PADF sign Agreement for Cooperation on Disaster Relief, Preparedness, Reconstruction and Mitigation.  AACCLA is the  largest private sector network in the LAC region with more than 20,000 corporate members. 

2000-05

Hurricane Mitch in Honduras

Establishment of community-based "Early Flood Alert Warning System" in municipalities in Sula Valley

1999

Flood & Landslides in hillside slum areas of Caracas, Venezuela

Provision of corporate funding for community-based relief and recovery projects in low-income hillside areas.

1998-05              

Hurricane Georges in Haiti & Dominican Republic

                                   

Emergency humanitarian supplies & $30 million in Haiti for reconstruction of rural roads, irrigation systems, schools, health centers, agricultural marketing facilities, and support to community-based disaster committees.

1998-2000

Hurricane Mitch in Honduras & Nicaragua

Emergency shelter packages, relief support to local NGOs, technical-financial assistance to municipalities for reconstruction planning, donation of medical  equipment to hospitals such as in Danlí with technical assistance from Cascos Blancos from Argentina

1998

El Niño Flooding in Argentina

Humanitarian relief in partnership with Massalin Particulares (Philip Morris Subsidiary and training of municipal leaders in disaster relief and preparedness.  

1998

El Niño Flooding in Ecuador

Humanitarian relief  supplies.

1994-95

Haiti Tropical Storm Gordon

Shelter packages & humanitarian supplies emergency JOBS program begun.

1991

El Salvador Earthquake

Rebuilding materials & supplies.

1980s -90s

Regional Disaster Assistance Training

Training of municipal leaders in disaster preparedness & mitigation. In-Kind donations of emergency relief commodities and medical equipment.

1988  

Hurricane Gilbert in Jamaica & Caribbean Islands

Emergency shelter packages & humanitarian supplies.

1980s

Regional Disaster Preparedness and Mitigation

Retrofitting of homes/community infrastructure to withstand hurricanes & tropical storms in Caribbean Basin & and earthquake prone countries.

1987 

Ecuador Earthquake & Tsunami                             

Emergency shelter packages & humanitarian supplies.

1986  

San Salvador, El Salvador Earthquake 

Earthquake Emergency relief supplies and medicines to earthquake victims also impacted by one of most serious civil wars in Central America

1985 

Mexico City Earthquake                                      

Humanitarian supplies and emergency shelter packages; assistance   in community organization for relief efforts, support for home-school rebuilding in low-income areas.  Former Mexican President Miguel Aleman and various Mexican movie stars, such as Cantinflas and others, joined the PADF Board of Trustees to raise funds to aid earthquake victims. 

1985 

Volcanic Eruption of Nevado del Ruiz & Armero Tragedy in Colombia

Emergency Shelter Packages with tents, blankets, plastic sheeting, water purification supplies, electrical generators, hand tools, rebuilding supplies, etc.

 

1983

El Niño Drought in Brazil

Humanitarian assistance.

1983-84  

El Niño Floods in Ecuador & Peru

Humanitarian supplies for emergency relief & technical assistance for community organization; funding for small community development projects in towns along northern Peruvian coast.

1979  

Hurricanes David & Frederick in Dominican Republic

Humanitarian supplies for emergency relief. Technical assistance with Dominican Development Foundation

1976 

Guatemala Earthquake

Humanitarian supplies for disaster relief & rebuilding materials for home repairs and reconstruction.

1974  

Hurricane Fifi in Honduras

Provision of emergency relief & commodities, technical advisors

 

1972-74

Earthquake destroys Managua, Nicaragua in December 1972

Humanitarian supplies, technical assistance and support to rehabilitating micro-enterprises in partnership with Nicaraguan Development Foundation & emergency employment support through micro-enterprises and community development.

1970

Peru Earthquake (Ancash & La Libertad) & Mount Huascarán Avalanche       

Humanitarian supplies & PADF technical assistance for community relief & organization.

1962-63

Earthquake in Southern Chile in May 1960 (largest up to that date in Western Hemisphere of 8.5 on Richter Scale) with recovery phase extending into 1962-64

Humanitarian supplies & technical assistance for disaster relief and community recovery.  PADF granted "Bernardo O'Higgins Award" for its assistance to Chilean recovery.