Source: United Nations World Food Programme (WFP)
Date: 22 Sep 2008
Port-au-Prince, 22 September 2008 - The latest news from the WFP team in Haiti:
- To date WFP has distributed more than 1,855 metric tons (MT) of rice, beans, cooking oil, fresh water and other supplies delivered across the country with the rate of distribution increasing all the time as conditions improve.
- WFP has supplied enough food to feed 373,000 people since the relief operation was launched. Some 226,000 of these are in Gonaives, the city that seems to have been worst hit by the floods, still only accessible by air and ship.
- Two helicopters chartered under WFP's Special Operation for air transport have arrived in Haiti. They will serve WFP and other humanitarian agencies. The first deployment will likely be the transportation of a portable hospital and water purification for the Spanish Red Cross in the previously inaccessible Croix-de-Fer area.
- Night-time distributions in Gonaives have now ended. Larger day distributions are now taking place, organized block by block or street by street, with each block electing a leader/spokesperson who then helps ensure cooperation with WFP and Care, Yele, local authorities and other partner NGOs.
WFP gets its own transport
- In the early days of the emergency, WFP had to rely on US and Canadian military assistance to transport food from Canada, the US and from Spanish Development Cooperation. It is now nearly ready to replace these services with its own chartered transport.
- WFP has contracted three large vessels as well as a chartered ferry that is to deliver some 350MT of food assistance, trucks, light vehicles and other non-food-items.
- At Cap Haitian, WFP has already contracted a 200-ton vessel that arrived at Port-de-Paix carrying 177MT. It has also contracted a 200-ton landing craft for the south coast that is due to arrive at the end of the week. Another 800-ton vessel will operate from Port-au-Prince to Gonaives
- The Norwegian Red Cross has donated 20 6x6 off-road trucks, small military vehicles that can navigate any terrain.
- The Canadian naval frigate St John carried its last cargo of WFP food Monday to Bainet and Cotes de Fer in the southern peninsula. It was the third delivery the Canadian navy have made for WFP to the area previously inaccessible due to mudslides.
- A US vessel has provided 100MT a day from Port de Paix to Gonaives using their landing craft units.
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