CHARLOTTE AMALIE, U.S. Virgin Islands, December 31, 2004 – United Way International, United Way of America, and local United Way affiliates in the South Asian areas, are working together with disaster response partners to assess and address the wide range long-term response and recovery needs of communities severely impacted by tsunami waves in recent days. There are two local United Ways in India and one in Indonesia. Both the United Way of St. Thomas-St. John and the United Way of St. Croix are affiliates of United Way International.
Christine James-Brown, president and CEO of United Way International said, "Although some of the immediate attention of local United Ways will be on supporting urgent needs like clean water, food and shelter, our collective focal point as a United Way system will be on long-term response and recovery." United Way long-term recovery efforts will concentrate on rebuilding homes, schools, health clinics and the infrastructure on which their fishing and tourist economies rely.
The United Way South Asia Response Fund has been created to support these long-term recovery efforts and will be administered by United Way International. Individuals and corporations interested in donating funds can make an online contribution by visiting: www.unitedway.org/tsunamiresponse or mailing a check or money order to: United Way South Asia Response Fund, c/o United Way International, 701 North Fairfax Street, Alexandria, VA, 22314.
For those interested in providing immediate relief assistance, please visit www.interaction.org, the website for InterAction, the largest alliance of U.S.-based international development and humanitarian nongovernmental organizations. United Way International is one of over 160 InterAction members working in partnership with United Nations disaster assessment country teams, various U.N. donor governments, and the governments of the affected countries to assess the extent of the disaster and to prioritize emergency needs.
InterAction has also developed guidelines on the most appropriate ways to help those affected by overseas disasters. See their Guide to Disaster Giving at www.interaction.org/disaster/guide_giving.html.
United Way on St. Thomas-St. John can be reached at 774-3185 and at 773-0582 on St. Croix.
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