The 2010 Chilean Earthquake: The Forgotten Disaster?

Monday, June 7th, 2010

In a recent plea for donations, Kinship Circle wondered whether the earthquake (and resulting tsunami) in Chile has become “the forgotten disaster” – in a year filled with both natural and man-made catastrophes:

IS CHILE THE FORGOTTEN DISASTER? May, 2010: An evacuee camp in Talquahano wants to kill all its companion animals. People who lost everything in an 8.8 earthquake and tsunami can’t feed themselves. They don’t want to watch their animals starve.

Kinship Circle and SACH intervene with food and veterinary aid. But without more funding, we can’t possibly meet the needs of 30 tent camps along Chile’s coast. We run out of sutures, latex gloves… At times we can’t afford the van rental to ferry our team, vet supplies and food.

Still, we can’t let despair propel Chileans to shoot their own animals. This speaks volumes about Chile’s quake/tsunami victims…and how the world seems to have forgotten them. People assume they can recover on their own. They’re wrong, especially when it comes to animals.

WHY IS THIS URGENT AND WHOM WILL IT HELP? Homeless guardians are unable to supply food or medicine to their animals. In the short term, animals require treatment for gashes, broken bones, lost limbs, dehydration, mange, worms, parasites or other illness. In the longer term, they need vaccines, nutrition and sterilization. Pre-quake strays with mange, malnutrition, infection…blend with animals stranded by disaster. The are scattered by the thousands along quake/tsunami torn towns like Villa Futura, Santa Clara Talchuano, Calita il Fiernillo, and Calita Los Morros, etc.

Preceded by the Haitian earthquake and followed by the BP oil “spill,” the Chilean earthquake hasn’t garnered as much attention as it might have otherwise. Indeed, though I compiled link roundups for all three disasters, the Chilean post has attracted the least traffic of the three, with views falling quickly mere weeks after the earthquake. Currently, the Haitian post receives x5 as many views as its Chilean counterpart, even though it’s two months older. Likewise (and outside of my own little slice of the interwebs), I cannot remember the last time I saw coverage of the earthquake in Chile on CNN, MSNBC, or the like. (Possibly not more than a week or two after the disaster struck?)

All of which isn’t to suggest that the survivors in Haiti and the Gulf Coast are not deserving of your support; not at all! Since most of us have limited funds and time, picking and choosing a cause or two to donate to can be a difficult, heartbreaking task. But if you have a little extra cash to spare, please consider sending it to help the survivors in Chile who have been hit doubly hard – first by the earthquake and tsunami, and later by donor fatigue.

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Earthquake in Chile: Some 700,000 Animals May Be Affected

Saturday, March 6th, 2010

Last updated 7/5/10 @ 8:20 PM CDT

While the recent earthquake (and resulting tsunami) in Chile has received less coverage – at least in regards to subsequent relief efforts – than that in Haiti, I was able to find some information on animal-friendly organizations that are providing help with disaster relief. Please feel free to share any additional information in the comments!

1. Vegan Bake Sales for Chile: As of this writing, I can’t find a post dedicated specifically to vegan bake sales to benefit Chilean quake survivors on the PPK blog, however, a search of the forums does bring up a few relevant threads. Head on over to the PPK to organize and announce your own bake sale for Chile!

2. Food for Life Global is on the ground in Chile, providing vegan and/or vegetarian meals to quake survivors:

BBC, Feb 28 — The death toll from Chile’s earthquake has more than doubled to 708 and is expected to rise further, President Michelle Bachelet has said. Previously about 300 people were estimated to have been killed in Saturday’s 8.8 magnitude quake – one of the most powerful recorded. Massive damage is hampering rescue teams as they struggle to reach those still buried in the rubble.

Food for Life emergency relief teams in the area are mobilizing to provide help. Donate now!

3. In Defense of Animals (IDA) reported on 3/18/10 that it will be sending aid to Chile:

On February 27, Chile experienced a magnitude 8.8 earthquake, followed by two tsunamis and several weeks of aftershocks.

IDA has already committed $5,000 to Socorro Animal Chile, SACH (Animal Relief Chile), a coalition of Chilean animal protection organizations. SACH sends three veterinarian-led teams into the field daily. We would like to send SACH even more assistance, as the need is enormous. Please help IDA continue to respond to natural disasters by contributing to our Disaster Relief Fund.

Funds IDA raises to help animals in Chile will be used to provide:

* Emergency sheltering for rescued animals
* Search and rescue efforts
* In-field sustenance (food/water program)
* Animal transport
* Temporary clinics to treat animals
* Support for spay/neuter and adoption programs

4. Finally, Kinship Circle has proven an excellent source of information on animal rescue and disaster relief efforts in Chile. All related Kinship Circle alerts are crossposted below. I’ve added additional links where necessary; the most recent alerts appear first, followed by earlier ones. You can also view a photo log of Kinship Circle’s rescue efforts in Chile on Flickr, @ KCChile.

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