Haiti Relief Efforts

Published: January 15th, 2010

Category: Memos

Brian Beach, Senior Vice President for Administration
Joe Glover, Provost

As the university community rallies to offer its talents, skills and expertise to those affected by Tuesday’s earthquake in Haiti, the need for a central point of contact to coordinate and direct efforts has become apparent.

Therefore, we are pleased to announce that effective today, that role will be filled by Lynn Frazier, formerly of UF’s International Center. Lynn’s temporary duties will include serving as the university’s liaison with the state Division of Emergency Management and other state and federal agencies, and helping university faculty and staff get their skills and talents to the places where they are needed most. * (Please see notes below for additional information)

Lynn can be reached at lfrazier@ufl.edu or 352-392-0186.

We are awed and humbled by what people are doing to help, nationally and statewide and at the university. Things are developing quickly, so let me apologize in advance if we fail to mention a new initiative, but here are some of the great things you in the UF community have already accomplished during the past 72 hours:

  • Students rallied to launch Gators United for Haiti, which set a goal of raising $50,000 for relief efforts – $1 for every student on campus. A plethora of groups are involved, with students collecting donations around UF.
  • A team of faculty and staff at three UF colleges is gearing up to help the Haitian community of Christianville. The team had been working on health promotion in Christianville, located just six miles from the earthquake’s epicenter. We anticipate members will go to the community in coming days to help deliver food and supplies and get a grip on its future needs. The team also will be providing medical assistance and assessing medical needs.
  • A UF forensic expert is already in Haiti to help with identification of earthquake victims.
  • Shands HealthCare hospitals stand ready to accept patients from Haiti, or patients from South Florida who need to be moved to make room for Haitian patients.Haiti is important to us — and helping Haitians now is greatly important to us. We want to urge you to contribute or lend a hand to aid organizations here at UF or elsewhere. Acting together, we can bring a measure of comfort and peace to people whose needs are truly desperate.

    Pulling together for others is one of the things we at the University of Florida do best. We thank you for all you are doing or will do.

    * All university community members or groups that seek to travel to Haiti in their University capacity or using any university account are required by the state of Florida and the U.S. Government to coordinate their travel through the state and federal emergency coordinators. This will help ensure that everyone brought into Haiti is needed and will not add unintentionally to the enormous burdens on emergency responders.

    Consequently, any university community members or groups who desire to travel to Haiti in their university capacity or using any university account must contact and coordinate their arrangements through—and with approval of–Lynn Frazier. Lynn will help coordinate with state and federal authorities to obtain the necessary approvals. The state of Florida has determined that any university community member who travels without approval of state coordinators will not be authorized by the state to do so and will not be covered by university or state insurance or have the benefit of sovereign immunity. This means that university individuals and groups that travel without state approval or otherwise in their personal (not UF) capacities will be personally liable if there is any damage or claim that arises from their activities in Haiti.

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