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CARE and Save the Children Receive $3 Million to Support Relief and Rehabilitation in India and El Salvador

Grants from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will help rebuild lives in quake-stricken countries

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
206-709-3400
Allen Clinton
CARE
Phone: 404.979.9206

Colleen Barton
Save the Children
Phone: 203.221.4187

ATLANTA -- CARE and Save the Children have received grants totaling $3 million from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to carry out relief and rehabilitation efforts in India and El Salvador, where recent earthquakes devastated lives and infrastructure. The grant comes as co-founder Melinda Gates concludes a visit to India. Both relief and development organizations each received $1 million for programs in India and $500,000 for programs in El Salvador. Local nonprofit agencies in the affected countries are working hard to alleviate the suffering and damage. Both Save the Children and CARE will support these committed organizations to achieve the best results for children and families.

"The earthquakes in India and El Salvador not only have taken lives but also destroyed schools, health clinics and the livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of families," says Peter D. Bell, president and CEO of CARE. "There has been a tremendous setback to the development of many poor communities. Rebuilding lives and livelihoods will be a long-term process."

On January 26, a 7.9 magnitude quake struck India's western state of Gujarat and the surrounding region. Many buildings, including schools and health clinics, buckled and fell to the ground. Water supplies in many places were disrupted.

Save the Children's initial response in India is focused on providing health care services and emergency shelter. Save the Children also is providing emergency medical equipment and supplies, and is working to re-establish health information services and disease control and surveillance. In addition, with the support of the grant, Save the Children will initiate reconstruction of primary schools, health centers, and water systems.

CARE's initial response in India is focused on distributing emergency kits and food to tens of thousands of families. CARE will use the $1 million grant to jump-start rehabilitation projects in Bhuj, Anzar, Bhachau and Rapar – the four hardest-hit areas of Kutch District in Gujarat. CARE and its local partners will organize communities to rebuild primary schools, health centers and repair water systems.

And in El Salvador, both CARE and Save the Children will work with communities to overcome damage inflicted by a 7.6 magnitude earthquake that killed hundreds, leveled buildings and destroyed water systems in cities and throughout the countryside.

The Ministry of Education estimates that nearly 300,000 children are currently out of school, as more than 230 schools and public buildings were destroyed. In response to the devastation, Save the Children and CARE will quickly build temporary school facilities and early childhood education community-based centers and, over the longer term, build permanent schools. Additionally, CARE will work with education authorities to incorporate disaster prevention lesson plans into school curriculums.

To help children and their families cope with the disaster, Save the Children will rebuild key infrastructure serving children and will implement community-based counseling programs to help children cope with the post-traumatic stress of the earthquake's devastation and to help restore a sense of safety and normalcy to their lives.

"These disasters have left children and their families in desperate need of shelter, clothing, food, clean water and basic sanitation," says Charles MacCormack, president and CEO of Save the Children. "The grant enables Save the Children to broaden its reach in helping children and their families rebuild their lives."

CARE is one of the world's largest private relief and development organizations, working in more than 60 developing countries to overcome the complex problem of poverty. CARE has worked in India since 1950 and in El Salvador since 1956 and supports self-help development projects in water and sanitation, education, primary health care, agriculture and community organization. This experience, combined with the more than 700 staff already present in both countries, leaves CARE well-positioned to both provide emergency relief and longer term rehabilitation programs. For more information visit <www.care.org>.

Save the Children is a leading international nonprofit child-assistance and development organization working in 48 countries, including the United States. Its mission is to make lasting, positive changes in the lives of children in need. In times of crisis, Save the Children helps children and their families recover from the effects of natural and man-made disasters. For more information visit Save the Children online.

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