LONDON, September 6, 2017 -- Child rights and humanitarian organization Plan International is ready to respond to Hurricane Irma in Haiti and the Dominican Republic.
The Category 5 hurricane is the most powerful Atlantic storm in recorded history, currently reaching maximum sustained winds of 183 mph. Such catastrophic winds combined with storm surges pose a great risk to life and property.
Predictions indicate that Irma will affect northern parts of the Hispaniola Island (Haiti and the Dominican Republic) on Thursday, September 7 local time.
Plan International emergency response specialists are already on the ground and closely monitoring the situation. The organization’s local teams are working with government agencies and communities for both preparedness and response measures.
"Our immediate concern is the safety of children and communities in areas likely to be impacted,” says Virginia Saiz, Plan International’s Country Director in the Dominican Republic. “Children, especially girls, are the most vulnerable when natural disasters occur, so we will work to ensure they receive the support they need prior to and in the aftermath of the hurricane.”
In Haiti, Plan International has dispatched relief supplies to the north eastern region.
"Haiti is one of the poorest and most fragile countries in the world, and we are still recovering from the devastation caused by both the earthquake in 2010 and Hurricane Matthew, which hit us hard in October 2016,” says Marie Therese Frederique Jean-Pierre, Plan International’s Country Director in Haiti. “The strength of Hurricane Matthew badly affected the lives and livelihoods of communities in exposed rural areas. Communities are extremely worried that the same may happen again.”
NOTE TO EDITORS: Spokespersons in Haiti and the Dominican Republic are available for interviews.
About Plan International USA
Plan International is an independent development and humanitarian organization that advances children’s rights and equality for girls. Plan believes in the power and potential of every child. Working together with children, young people, supporters, and partners, Plan strives for a just world, tackling the root causes of the challenges facing girls and all vulnerable children.
For more information, please visit PlanUSA.org.