Media Center

Press Release


  June 1, 2004

Assistant Secretary General Luigi Einaudi today presented a $50,000 check on behalf of the Organization of American States (OAS), to aid flood victims in Haiti and the Dominican Republic. This assistance is provided from the OAS’Inter-American Emergency Aid Fund (FONDEM) for residents of the border region of both countries, where recent severe flooding left a heavy death toll and material damage.

The Assistant Secretary General presented the check to John Sanbraillo, Executive Director of the Pan American Development Foundation (PADF), through which the donation is being channeled. Ambassador Einaudi underscored how this disaster of “biblical proportions” can be turned to advantage: while the loss of life and property cannot be discounted, he stressed solidarity and cooperation as vital to efforts to aid the disaster victims.

Thanking Einaudi and the OAS for their confidence in the PADF, Sanbraillo said the OAS funds will go immediately towards emergency shelter packages, emergency supplies, including such emergency relief items as food, water, blankets and tents.

He renewed the appeal to “people of goodwill” to assist, stressing that the PADF stands ready as a channel through which donations can reach immediately the most needy disaster victims. Sanbraillo added that his Foundation will continue to work with Dominicans and Haitians as well as the donor communities.

Expressing appreciation, the Dominican Republic Permanent Representative to the OAS, Ambassador Leonora Sánchez Barret, lamented the massive loss of life and property, saying “solidarity is the greatest thing we can give in this world.”

Meanwhile, Mr. Duly Brutus, Haiti’s Interim Representative to the OAS, said the disaster had struck his country very badly, but assured OAS officials that his country remains very grateful for their strong support at this most difficult time.

Reference: E-090/04