chapter  11
30 Pages

— International and Humanitarian Disaster Relief

How people and organizations offer aid matters. Sending high heels to Mexico after an earthquake does not work. Neither does sending the wrong kind of boat to Indian fishermen after a tsunami. Relief flights may clog small airports in developing nations, while medical teams and nutritional supplies are diverted. Used clothing and expired medications will pile up and impede distribution points. All of these and similar situations have happened, over and over, in previous disasters. We must be sure to offer aid tied to what is needed and will be used, rather than what may be inappropriate or thwart aid delivery systems. To be effective, international and humanitarian aid must be organized, partnered, and appropriate to relieve suffering.