CARE Australia has today launched its online Disaster Response Depot, allowing Australians to help the organisation keep its emergency response warehouse in Brisbane stocked to meet future humanitarian crises.
CARE Australia’s Emergency Response Manager Adam Poulter said the launch comes as we’re seeing the highest levels of human suffering since the Second World War.
“Hundreds of thousands of people live in fear of natural disasters and while we can’t stop an earthquake or cyclone, we can reduce their impact,” Mr Poulter said.
“Money spent on preparations before a disaster strikes can have up to seven times the impact value compared to money spent responding to the aftermath,” he said.
CARE’s Disaster Response Depot invites Australians to build a virtual pallet in the warehouse and pay for items to help communities prepare for and respond to natural disasters. From purchasing blankets and shelter kits, to helping fund evacutation plans and megaphones, there are multiple ways to help minimise the impact of a natural disaster.
“Preparing for a natural disaster can take many forms; for example CARE worked with the Vanuatu government to set up Community Disaster Committees, which saved lives during Cyclone Pam in 2015. Local people were trained and equipped to prepare and help their neighbours respond when the cyclone was bearing down on them,” Mr Poulter said.
Currently, record numbers of people – over 60 million according to the United Nations – have been forced from their homes by natural disasters, climate change and conflict.
In just over a year CARE has responded to two huge cyclones in the Pacific, which hit Vanuatu and Fiji, drought in Papua New Guinea and the devastating earthquake in Nepal. The organisation is also supporting refugees from the deadly civil war in Syria, which has entered its sixth year and is estimated to have killed over 250,000 people.
The Disaster Response Depot is launching as the World Humanitarian Summit kicks off in Turkey. Running 23-24 May, it is the first summit of its kind and aims to discuss best practice and initiate a set of concrete commitments aimed at enabling people to better prepare for and respond to crises.
You can find out more and donate to CARE’s Disaster Response Depot at: www.care.org.au/depot
CARE is an international humanitarian aid organisation that has been responding to emergencies since 1945 and when disaster strikes, CARE responds within hours. We provide life-saving aid and services to those who need it most, with a special focus on women and girls. Our immediate work focuses on shelter, food, water and health.
For interviews with CARE’s Emergency Response Manager Adam Poulter, contact Dylan Quinnell (0412 449 691)