Cuba begins assessment in wake of multiple hurricanes

By September 11, 2008

Cuba (MNN) — More than one
million people evacuated their homes in Cuba as Hurricane Ike tore into the
country, killing at least four people. In its wake were 20 inches of rain and damages left by 100-mph
sustained winds.

Ike's final kick at Cuba left 100,000 damaged
homes and caused billions of dollars in infrastructure damage. The storm is now taking aim at the Gulf of
Mexico. Forecasters think it will
strengthen to a major Category 3 storm before
slamming into Texas, Mexico or western Louisiana by this weekend.

Meanwhile, Sonny Enriquez, Senior Advisor for Disaster Services with
International Aid, says their partners in
Cuba are asking for help. "International Aid was in contact with our partners there. We work with the Council of Christian Churches,
and they have been fielding assessment teams." 

By working with the vibrant
church in Cuba, the teams will have a great opportunity to act as the hands and
feet of Christ. There's a lot to do:
Enriquez says Ike's fury compounded the damage done by Hurricane Gustav. 

"The initial requests that
were made to us were in the form of housing assistance," says Enriquez, but International Aid,
being health focused, is looking more in the area of disease prevention and
first aid responses. We are mobilizing a
lot of our hygiene kits until we get word from our partners that they are ready
to receive and distribute them."

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