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For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
January 10, 2005

Event Backgrounder: President's Remarks to USAID Employees and NGO Presidents

11:10 a.m. -- 12:00 p.m.

Washington, DC


There are approximately 1,000 U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) staff in Washington and 7,000 American and Foreign Service National staff serving overseas. The work of USAID includes humanitarian assistance and the implementation of U.S. foreign assistance programs in democracy building, economic growth, health, education, environment and other sectors.

Nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) are key partners of USAID in implementing international development programs as well as humanitarian response.

The NGOs represented are actively providing assistance in one or more of the tsunami-affected countries. Most have received funds from USAID for some of their work, but are also utilizing private donations to support their relief efforts. These organizations maintain equipment along with highly specialized and experienced staff to respond to natural disasters. Many of these organizations were already working in the areas prior to the disaster and shifted their focus to humanitarian relief. They have augmented their staff in affected countries with disaster relief experts. Their staff leave at a moment's notice to work in very austere conditions and deliver life-saving services including food, water, shelter and medical assistance. These organizations generally continue to work in the affected areas long after the relief phase has ended to continue to rebuild homes, communities and livelihoods.


THE PRESIDENT Secretary Colin Powell Andrew Natsios, USAID Administrator

LEADERS OF MAJOR RELIEF NGOs American Red Cross Air-Serv International Medical Corps International Relief and Development, Inc. Mercy Corps Project Concern World Vision Action Against Hunger Americares CARE Catholic Relief Services Northwest Medical Teams Relief International Salvation Army World Service Save the Children, USA World Concern Project Hope American Jewish World Service Concern Worldwide Food for the Hungry World Relief Lutheran World Relief Episcopal Relief and Development CHF International

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