Since its founding in India in 1965, Ananda Marga Universal Relief Team (AMURT) has been dedicated to implementing disaster relief and development solutions to impoverished communities around the world. Instead of a cookie cutter based approach where every community receives the same aid regardless of circumstance, AMURT strives to localize solutions based on each community’s unique needs. With relief teams now set up and helping in 34 countries, here are 4 crisis zones where AMURT is making a major difference.
1. Ghana – Safer Water & Healthier Villages
Through the Mafi-Zongo Area Water Project, surface water from a seasonal river is treated with a variety of filters to make it safe for drinking. It is then pumped down a mountain through 45 pipes. Ghanaians pay about 2 pennies for a 20 liter bucket of water, the cost of which goes towards water treatment staffing and running the generators. Because of AMURT’s project, 9,000 people now have access to disease-free water that is not contaminated by the Guinea worm which is very prevalent in the area.
2. Syria – Help for the Displaced
The current civil war in Syria has led to a humanitarian crisis where more than 2 million refugees are fleeing to surrounding countries. The number of people increases daily, yet supplies for the displaced are dwindling. AMURT is now in Lebanon distributing precious, basic items to Syrian refugees. These goods include stoves, bedding, medicine, and 40 kilograms of food. Though it may not seem like much, these basic items mean everything for the survival of refugees.
3. Kenya – HIV/AIDS Assistance
As part of an initiative to help people living with AIDS in Kenya, AMURT has created a home-based care provider program to improve lives through “nursing care, nutritional education, [and] counseling.” These local providers are trained through the country’s Ministry of Health, and they make routine visits to AIDS patients’ homes when they are too sick to move. With this program, over 100 care providers have already been trained who are making a difference in the lives of thousands of patients and their families.
4. Haiti – Earthquake Relief
In the time since the devastating 2010 earthquake in Haiti, AMURT raised over $4.2 million to help with the social and structural redevelopment of the country. Their main project worked on restoring well-being to Haitian children’s lives through nutritional assistance, motivational activities, and various kinds of educational enrichment. Since its inception, the psycho-social support program has reached 4,000 impoverished youth. In addition, AMURT helped thousands of people in displacement camps throughout Port-au-Prince with water filtration, cholera prevention, and even microfinance projects.
AMURT has proven that one organization can help tackle any disaster by utilizing local solutions and long-term development ideas. To find out more about AMURT and their wide-array of relief projects around the globe, visit their website.
– Caylee Pugh