Date: August 25, 2018
Disaster: Venezuela Earthquake
Organization Supported: Direct Relief on behalf of Accion Solidaria
In August of 2018, Ace Rivington donated 25% of all proceeds generated over a weekend of sales to Accion Solidaria on behalf of Direct Relief.
Acción Solidaria was founded in 1995 with a focus on support for people living with HIV/AIDS, but in response to the rapidly deteriorating health system in Venezuela over the past three years, it has expanded their operations to a much broader patient population, delivering primary care and essential medications in otherwise impossible circumstances.
Official government health data is hard to come by, but the most recent official report from the Venezuelan Ministry of Health revealed a 65% increase in maternal mortality and a 30% increase in infant mortality. It also revealed that while Venezuela had been the first country in the world to eliminate malaria in populated areas, this and other diseases such as diphtheria, which had previously been controlled, had returned in several outbreaks. Health care outcomes have continued to deteriorate rapidly. The national medical stock is reported to be only at 23% capacity, which is considered by WHO standards to be a critical stockout. Essential medicines for conditions such as heart disease and diabetes—the leading causes of death in Venezuela – are hard to very hard to come by, and more specialized medicines, such as oncology drugs, are virtually impossible to find.
Direct Relief has delivered $9.1 M in medical aid to Acción Solidaria since early 2017, and has just begun a procurement process to purchase what the organization has identified as its most critical needs. Direct Relief’s partnership with Acción Solidaria is one of trust and collaboration, and together the organizations have served thousands of patients in Caracas and other Venezuelan states.