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Monday, December 29, 2003

Westport’s Save the Children Helping Iran Earthquake Victims

Westports Save the Children is appealing for public support to help victims of the devastating earthquake in Iran.

Emergency response workers from the Wilton Road-based humanitarian group arrived in Iran over the weekend. They plan to provide dislocated families basic shelter assistance, medical care and help children who have lost parents and other loved ones.

“There are tens of thousands of people without homes,” Michael Kiernan, a Save the Children spokesman, said today. “Many are sleeping on the ground. It’s freezing. It’s clearly important to respond to the survivor’s needs.”

Schools and health facilities have been destroyed, leaving children especially vulnerable, he said.

Save the Children will be focusing its initial efforts in Baravet, a town of about 50,000, four miles south of the main city of Bam.

Homeless families need basic necessities such as tents, blankets, children’s clothes, shoes, cooking sets, plastic sheeting and hygiene kits, according to Save the Children.

“We also will be working to protect children who may have lost parents and loved ones and who often are among the most vulnerable survivors of a disaster like this,” said Rudy Von Bermuth, the organization’s vice president in charge of emergency response.

Save the Children has set a goal of raising $1.75 million for the relief in Iran, Kiernan said. About $150,000 has been pledged so far, he said.

Save the Children is seeking private financial donations to help respond to the crisis.

Donations may be made to: Save the Children/Iran Children in Crisis Earthquake Fund, 54 Wilton Road, Westport, CT 06880 or by calling (800) 728-3843.


Posted 12/29/03 at 11:10 PM  Permalink


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