PITTSBURGH, Sept. 12 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Global Links has announced an immediate need for financial support from institutions and individuals to assist the organization in delivering critical medical supplies to Cuba in the wake of Hurricane Gustav and Hurricane Ike. Global Links, a medical relief organization based in Pittsburgh, is coordinating a strategic response to help medical facilities that were affected when both storms passed over the island. Global Links is working the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization to respond to this disaster.
As the strongest hurricane to affect Cuba in decades, Gustav displaced thousands of Cuban people, destroyed nearly 100,000 homes and gravely damaged hospitals and clinics throughout the island. Hurricane Ike, which hit Cuba just days after Gustav with 100 mph winds, has exacerbated an already dire situation. As such, Cuban health institutions are in desperate need of supplies and equipment in order to maintain care for the population. If this need is not met, the lives of thousands of Cuban people will be put at risk.
Complicating an already dire situation, the U.S. blockade of Cuba makes it difficult to ship critically needed humanitarian aid to the island country, and also prevents relatives from sending money and care packages to family members on the island. Global Links, however, is uniquely situated to provide medical relief to Cuban health facilities, being one of only a handful of U.S. organizations that holds a federal license to do so, and because Global Links has fostered strong relationships with Cuban medical institutions since 1994, the beginning of the Global Links Aid Program to Cuba.
“Global Links has the capacity and structure necessary to respond to critically needed medical materials in Cuba,” said Kathleen Hower, Executive Director of Global Links. “We still need the help of individuals and organizations, however, to support the financial costs of these efforts.”
Individuals can assist Cubans affected by the hurricanes by making a tax-deductible donation to Global Links online at www.globallinks.org or by sending a check to:
Attention: Cuba Hurricane Relief
4809 Penn Ave., # 2
Pittsburgh, PA 15224
Institutions desiring to contribute financial assistance or medical goods should contact Angela Garcia at 412.361.3424.
About Global Links
Global Links is a Pittsburgh-based medical relief and development organization dedicated to a two-fold mission of environmental stewardship and improving health in developing countries. Global Links collaborates with U.S. hospitals to redirect still useful materials away from the waste stream to public health improvement efforts in targeted countries throughout the hemisphere. Since 1989, Global Links has channeled more than 3,000 tons of medical materials worth $155 million to more than 70 countries around the world, with a concentration in Latin America and the Caribbean. For more information on Global Links, visit www.globallinks.org or call 412-361-3424.
About the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO)
The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) is an international public health agency with more than 100 years of experience in working to improve health and living standards of the countries of the Americas. It serves as the specialized organization for health of the Inter-American System. PAHO also serves as the Regional Office for the Americas of the World Health Organization and enjoys international recognitions as part of the United Nations system. For more information on PAHO, visit www.paho.org.