Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Update on Help to Haiti victims Courtesy of U of M E-Veritas

Update: Courtesy of University of Miami E-Veritas News:

Donations to crisis-hit Haiti began to flow from University of Miami employees through a special Web site launched just a day after the devastating earthquake killed tens of thousands in the island nation. The initiative is just the beginning of a series of relief efforts under way at UM as students and faculty return this week after a month-long winter break.

UM officials have met regularly since the quake hit, discussing relief efforts to aid victims and planning events such as a “Coming Together as a People of Haiti” forum and candlelight vigil, both of which will be held Wednesday night on the Coral Gables campus. The University is also working to facilitate the return of students who were in Haiti on intersession courses when the quake hit, assisting South Florida’s large Haitian community, and sending much-needed aid, especially the medical expertise of Miller School of Medicine physicians, to the country.

Money is what’s needed most, UM officials say. Employees can still make donations via the ’Canes Helping Haiti Web site, which includes extensive information on how to help and updates on upcoming programs and events related to the disaster and relief efforts. At tonight’s men’s basketball game against Boston College, which starts at 9 p.m. in the BankUnited Center, the Department of Athletics will be collecting monetary donations in support of the UM/United Way “Operation Helping Hands” initiative, which supports the UM Global Institute and the work of its doctors, nurses, and students who are working directly with quake victims.

Other UM initiatives are also under way or in the planning stages as student organizations, schools and colleges, centers, and institutes mobilize resources

The School of Law’s HOPE Public Interest Resource Center was among the first to respond, launching a Web site that includes information on how to send aid, campus-wide relief efforts, upcoming fundraisers, and resources for families affected by the tragedy.

The Rosenstiel School’s Center for Southeastern Tropical Advanced Remote Sensing, a satellite receiving and analysis complex in southern Miami-Dade County, is supporting the U.S. Southern Command and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency with imagery to aid their rescue efforts in Haiti.

Counselors have been made available to students through the Counseling Center, and the Faculty and Staff Assistance Program is aiding employees in need of help.

The Miller School has sent medical equipment, supplies, and teams of specialists to Haiti to provide lifesaving treatment to survivors.

A medical team led by neurosurgeon Barth Green, cofounder of Project Medishare, an initiative dedicated to improving the health of the Haitian people, arrived in Haiti a day after the quake, treating critically wounded people within five minutes of landing at the airport in Port-au-Prince.

Emergency personnel at the University of Miami/Jackson Ryder Trauma Center have admitted patients evacuated from Haiti. The Ryder Trauma Center is coordinating with other South Florida medical centers, including Jackson North and South and University of Miami Hospital, to handle the large number of patients anticipated.

On Wednesday, January 20 at 8 p.m., a candlelight vigil will be held at the University Center Rock.

We continue to keep the victims of friends and family in our prayers.

Cindy Papale

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