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Californians Help Survivors Of Myanmar Disaster

May 13, 2008

CA - Californians are being asked to donate to help the survivors of last week's devastating cyclone in Myanmar, who are without shelter or drinking water, and are at risk of disease.

As the death toll nears a staggering 100,000, international relief efforts are picking up. Mercy Corps' Caitlin Carlson says the government of the Asian nation is finally accepting outside supplies, although humanitarian access remains a challenge. United Nations' officials have urged the country to open its borders and grant visas, to allow relief workers to deliver aid more quickly to several hundred thousand survivors.

"Time is definitely of the essence. These people have lost everything, food is dwindling, and water is not clean, so the faster the humanitarian assistance gets there, the better."

Californians have experienced their share of natural disasters, Carlson adds, and have always been willing to help others.

"Californians are very generous. It's one of our higher fundraising markets, where people really respond well to this type of call for assistance."

Carlson says her organization is coordinating its efforts with relief organizations already in the region, because that will help speed food, water, clothing and medical supplies directly to those who need them most. Donations to Mercy Corps can be made online, and can be earmarked for Myanmar relief, at www.mercycorps.org. The site also includes regular updates on the Myanmar cleanup.


Lori Abbott/Eric Mack, Public News Service - CA