ShelterBox Responds to Hurricane Irma

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ShelterBox is on the ground standing ready to provide aid to those in Hurricane Irma’s path.

ShelterBox Tents used shelter-in-shelter solution in Texas following Hurricane Harvey
As Florida prepares for a potentially catastrophic event, ShelterBox is prepared to respond with its Shelter-in-a-Shelter tents, solar lights, blankets, groundsheets, and additional support, just as it did in Texas this past week.

While continuing to provide critically needed shelter aid to Hurricane Harvey evacuees in Texas, disaster-relief organization ShelterBox has deployed a Response Team to Florida where emergency aid has been prepositioned in anticipation of Hurricane Irma making landfall.

“Our proximity is paramount. ShelterBox USA has an office in Sarasota and has board members and volunteers in Florida now mobilizing,” says ShelterBox USA President Kerri Murray. “As Florida prepares for a potentially catastrophic event, ShelterBox is prepared to respond with its Shelter-in-a-Shelter tents, solar lights, blankets, groundsheets, and additional support, just as it did in Texas this past week.”

The innovative Shelter-in-a-Shelter tents serve as critically needed private spaces for health care, lactation stations, AA meeting locations, and places of worship at George R. Brown Convention Center and other Houston area shelters.

“It’s hard enough to lose your home and be traumatized by the massive devastation of a disaster. In these times, critical community services and support can be disrupted. In Houston, we provided the privacy tents to enable services to continue and a sense of normalcy and dignity for already traumatized individuals,” Murray said. “ShelterBox is prepared to respond to natural disasters of the highest magnitude. It was a first responder after Hurricane Matthew last year and to the massive earthquake in Haiti in 2010, where some durable tents still provide shelter for families who lost everything.”

An estimated 49 million people are living in the path of Hurricane Irma – now roughly the size of France. A Category 5 storm, Irma’s wind speeds are up to 185 miles per hour. It’s expected to make landfall in Florida late Saturday evening or early Sunday morning. Mandatory evacuations have been ordered of the Florida Keys, for all of Monroe County, and for areas of Broward County and Miami-Dade County.

ShelterBox has also deployed a Response Team to Panama, where 2,000 ShelterKits containing the essential tools people need to start repairing and rebuilding homes are pre-positioned. The team will meet with international aid organizations there to coordinate its activities.

Other active ShelterBox deployments include Nepal, where more than 1.7 million are devastated by flooding. Another team is heading to Bangladesh, where a third of the country is under water.

To see footage, photos, and a press release about the ShelterBox support of Hurricane Harvey evacuees, visit: http://www.shelterboxusa.org/harvey. For more information about the ShelterBox Irma response, visit: http://www.shelterboxusa.org/irma.

CONTACT: Susan Skog, Senior Communications Manager, 970-797-2270 or sskog(at)shelterboxusa(dot)org

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Chris Alexander
ShelterBox USA
+1 9419076036 Ext: 102
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ShelterBox USA
since: 03/2010
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