June 04, Colombo: U.S. Ambassador to Sri Lanka Atul Keshap joined President Maithripala Sirisena to announce approximately
Rs. 350 million ($2.3 million) in humanitarian assistance from the United States government and people to help victims of flooding and landslides in Sri Lanka.
The aid will be used to provide safe drinking water, hygiene kits, emergency shelter materials, home repair kits and critical health care services to stave off diseases. A portion of the assistance will be provided through Sarvodaya, a Sri Lankan non-governmental and charitable organization.
“Americans and Sri Lankans have shared a deep bond throughout the history of our two countries,” said Ambassador Keshap. “The people of both countries have always stood side-by-side in times of need.”
The assistance will be provided through the U.S. Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA), part of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Since 2001, OFDA has provided approximately LKR 19 billion ($125 million) in disaster assistance and disaster risk reduction to Sri Lanka.
In addition to the relief supplies, disaster experts from USAID/OFDA and the Department of Defense’s Civil Military Support Element (CMSE) attached to the U.S Embassy are helping organize U.S. response efforts, conducting damage assessments, and working with Sri Lankan government officials and humanitarian partners to evaluate needs on the ground.
U.S. Army engineers and Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) cadets are cleaning and repairing flood damage at schools in the Kalutara district in coordination with CMSE, the Disaster Management Centre, and local officials.