Saturday, April 16, 2016 was a typical day on the Pacific coast of Ecuador, then suddenly at 6:58 PM local time a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck and thousands of lives were changed forever. 661 people lost their lives and almost 28,000 people were injured.
MAP International has had a programmatic focus in Ecuador for over 20 years with dedicated staff stationed there.
When disasters hit MAP International springs into action because time is critical and lives depend on our sense of urgency. It takes a total team effort at MAP to respond to disasters. Let me start by recognizing the folks who really went above and beyond in this response effort:
Maggy Martinez: Maggy is our MAP country leader in Ecuador. Let me just say this wonderful dedicated woman rose the occasion and worked countless hours to gain pre-clearance on needed supplies, met our relief supplies at the airport, and traveled all over the affected areas building relationships to help folks in need with our disaster relief supplies. Big thanks to Maggy and the Ecuador team.
Airlink: This wonderful MAP logistics partner is a rapid response humanitarian relief organization that links airlines with pre-qualified nonprofit organizations. The team at Airlink responded to our request for assistance within 10 minutes and the process began to deliver earthquake relief supplies to Quito, Ecuador. Stephanie Austin, Michael Brown and the entire Airlink Network has saved MAP hundreds of thousands of dollars in transport cost during relief situations over the past 3 years.
International Relief Teams: IRT has been a MAP partner for over 20 years and have funded countless relief projects for MAP over that span. Barry La Forgia and team in San Diego came through once again with funding to cover our operational expenses so victims of disasters can receive medicines and supplies at no cost delivered through our country office in Ecuador.
Cross International: This MAP partner based in Pompano Beach, Florida funded two Interagency Emergency Health Kits purchased and flown from Europe to meet the needs of up to 20,000 people for up to 90 days. Cross has done the same for Nepal and Guatemala after disasters through MAP recently. Cross and MAP are developing a very active disaster relief partnership to pre-plan and pre-position relief supplies for future disaster relief work.
Katie Pace: When disasters hit Katie and I are in constant communication on how and when we will respond. Me from a tactical/planning side, and her from a marketing and communication side. We have a great system in place that has been very effective in the last two major relief responses at MAP both Ecuador and Nepal. Thanks Katie.
Timmy Boatwright: I have worked on disaster relief projects with this man for 23 years. This man always comes through for the people who are hurting around the world. His entire team plays a huge role in the packing, shipping, and storing of disaster relief medications. Thanks Timmy and team.
MAP Global Giving Team: Being a part of this wonderful, innovative team has given me a shot in the arm over the past 16 months. Big thanks to Jodi Allison and team for providing support, prayer, resources, and products needed to be an effective disaster relief organization.
Steve Stirling: The leadership, vision, and commitment of this man has MAP positioned to be very effective in our core strengths over the next 5-10 years.
Do you notice the theme here? It takes collaboration to be an effective disaster relief organization both internally and externally.
Our 3 month update is as follows:
Hospitals Served: 11 major hospitals in earthquake affected areas in Ecuador.
Value of Medicines shipped: $1.7 million
None of which could have been accomplished without all collaboration of people and partners identified above. We are blessed to serve at MAP.