Oxfam Ballymena Haiti Earthquake appeal

FOLLOWING the massive 7.0 magnitude earthquake which struck the Caribbean Island of Haiti, leaving thousands dead, millions affected and the entire country's infrastructure crippled, Oxfam Ballymena is making an urgent appeal for people to donate money in the Church Street store.

The response of people so far has been one of amazing generosity and compassion with over 753.00 being donated in the Ballymena store in the days following the catastrophe.

Lorraine Mahon, Manager of Oxfam Ballymena, says she has been overwhelmed by how the people of Ballymena have responded to assist Haiti which is recognised as the poorest country in the western hemisphere

“We’ve had donations, large and small through our counter box and also over the till and all are extremely welcome. In the last week we’ve had children come into the shop with their piggy banks and money boxes, along with donations from individuals and local businesses and we would like to thank the people of Ballymena for their support during these recessionary times. We would urge people to continue their support and also assure people that no amount of a donation is too small as it all adds up”.

"We rely on the generosity of Ballymena residents for our stock. Without continued donations of everything from clothing to cookware, Oxfam would not be in a position to help millions of people around the world, including those in desperate need in Haiti this week."

Oxfam is unable to send out donations of blankets, clothes and other materials directly to Haiti, as it is vastly more expensive and inefficient to send goods from Ireland rather than source them locally. However, people in Ballymena who want to donate items to help Oxfam’s work should still take donations to the Ballymena Oxfam shop, as the funds raised from their sale allows the charity to continue saving lives around the world

Oxfam are appealing to people of all ages who would be interested in organising events, such as Car Boot Sales, Cake Sales, Coffee mornings, sponsored walk, table quiz’s and any other events to support Haiti. Oxfam can guarantee a safe and secure channel for all funds to reach the people in Haiti who need it most.

Oxfam International has a great deal of experience over the years in Haiti and is rushing teams from around the region to respond where they are needed most. Oxfam is sending up to 10 tonnes of water, sanitation, health and shelter equipment to Haiti. 85% of the people of Haiti already live in poverty and given the desperate needs that people face on a day to day basis, this earthquake has been devastating but with the continued support and international response that has occurred to date a real difference can be made to those who have suffered.

People can donate through the Oxfam store on 125 Church St, Ballymena, BT43 6DG, by calling 0800 0 30 40 55 or online at www.oxfamireland.org