PRESS RELEASE – THE United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is sending experts on crisis recovery to support the people of the Caribbean as they brave Hurricane Irma, one of the most powerful storms ever recorded in the Atlantic.
UNDP has activated its crisis preparedness plans in several countries in the region and will support them both during the immediate response to this disaster and in crucial early recovery activities like debris and waste management, emergency employment and supporting core government functions, if asked.
“The hurricane may severely impact people’s livelihoods — directly affecting women, men and children — impacting crucial activities for people, communities and entire countries such as agriculture, fisheries and small and medium enterprises,” said U.N. Assistant Secretary-General and UNDP Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean, Jessica Faieta.
While the storm has already reached several smaller Caribbean islands, it is forecast to potentially still hit the Dominican Republic, Haiti and Cuba. UNDP is ready to provide support at the request of the respective governments.
In the past decade, UNDP has invested nearly US$300 million in disaster preparedness in Latin America and the Caribbean, working with governments at the national and local levels, as well as communities. Last year, UNDP allocated over $2 million for crisis response and preparedness in the region and deployed nearly 100 officers to provide immediate support to affected countries.