Jordan International Aid (JIA) is a faith-based, all-volunteer, humanitarian aid and relief organization. While they are huge proponents of development rather than relief, there are times when natural disasters such as earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes, drought and disease, or human made-disasters (war, genocide, injustice) demand immediate responses on a large scale and JIA stands ready to step in and help.
When the Philippines was devastated by Typhoon Haiyan, JIA immediately went into action. Dr. Enoch Choi, the medical director for JIA, contacted us to see if we would once again provide XCom Global’s Disaster Relief Wi-Fi hotspots to their volunteer crew – as we did when they responded to the tsunami in Japan in 2011. He described our contribution of Internet connectivity during their Japan relief efforts as “essential.” Of course, we were more than happy to lend our support to JIA’s Philippines Typhoon Haiyan Relief and had units dispatched to them immediately.
JIA plans to send a team of about a 100 volunteer doctors and nurses to provide medical care. “What we always find is there is an overwhelming need and we are there to provide care where patients can’t get care,” Choi said.
The main challenge is safe passage into the affected areas. The Government estimates that some 4.3 million people are affected, across 36 provinces, and initial assessments show that thousands of homes have been destroyed, roads are impassable and people need food, water, shelter and power.
Jesse Mendoza, JIA president, and a small initial survey team arrived in the Philippines earlier this week on board a C130 military plane and were able to successfully reach Tacloban. Jesse posted photos showing the devastation as well as the XCom Global devices being used in the field. While he thanked us for making it possible for them to stay connected, we’d like to thank Jesse, all of the JIA volunteers and the countless others from relief organizations who are there providing aid.