Donations made toward IRUSA’s Latin America Humanitarian Aid fund in excess of the support requirements for these emergencies may be used to support other important emergency or long-term humanitarian work in those countries. Natural tragedies like these don’t discriminate—we are so thankful that your hearts are open and generous to helping our brothers and sisters in need all across Latin America, and around the world.
IRUSA in Latin America
Islamic Relief USA has been providing relief efforts across Latin America for years, starting with efforts in Haiti in the aftermath of paralyzing earthquake that left the island-nation in shambles. Over the years, emergency aid work has carried over into countries like Colombia and Ecuador. The IRUSA community continues to provide aid as often and as efficiently as it can across the region, most hurriedly after emergencies strike, like recently in Mexico and Puerto Rico.
MARIA DEVASTATES PUERTO RICO
On September 20, 2017, Hurricane Maria slammed Puerto Rico as a category 4 storm, with upwards of 155 mph winds. The hurricane devastated the small island. The entire population of 3.3 million lost electricity, and many in rural areas had to live without electricity for 11 months. As of August 2018, Puerto Rican officials confirmed the death toll at 2,975.
In the aftermath, IRUSA worked with partners on the ground in Puerto Rico to distribute aid in the form of water, food, and monetary funds. Over a year later, many of our Puerto Rican sisters and brothers still need water, food, generators, and so much more. In late June 2018, IRUSA returned to Puerto Rico with Lions Club International to provide disaster relief and lend support to survivors. Donations from generous donors allow IRUSA to continue providing relief through partners on the ground.
ASSISTING VENEZUELAN REFUGEES
Due to the humanitarian crisis in Venezuela, Latin American and the Caribbean are currently hosting 2.4 million of Venezuela’s refugees and migrants. with the highest number of refugees and migrants going to Columbia and Peru, respectively. IRUSA is carrying out projects to provide assistance to vulnerable Venezuelans.
In Peru, IRUSA is implementing a project that is expected to benefit nearly 8,000 refugees in 2019. This project will improve the quality of the shelters hosting these refugees by providing them with beds, cleaning materials, and furniture. It will also improve community kitchens by providing the kitchens with furniture, equipment, utensils, and cleaning materials.
In addition, a portion of the meals packaged during the 2018 500K Meal Pack Out is going to Venezuelan refugees entering Cúcuta, Columbia. IRUSA is carrying out this project in partnership with the Rotary e-Club of Houston and the Cúcuta Rotary Club. The meals are currently being distributed through food banks and are expected to reach approximately 5,000 people a day.