DEC 'unlikely to launch Chile appeal'

Member organisations have little presence in the areas affected, says chief executive Brendan Gormley

The Disasters Emergency Committee is unlikely to launch an appeal for people affected by the earthquake in Chile.

Brendan Gormley, chief executive of the organisation, told Third Sector it would hold a teleconference with its 13 international aid agency members on Tuesday morning to discuss whether a coordinated appeal was necessary.

He said the DEC was assessing the situation in Chile against its criteria for launching an appeal, which include the scale and urgency of the crisis, the likelihood that an appeal will be successful and the extent to which members are well placed to provide effective aid.

"The Chilean government has been very clear about the assistance it requires and I think it is unlikely that international charities will play a major role," he said. The main request was for field hospitals, he said.

Gormley said Save the Children had already launched a fundraising appeal and it was likely that Cafod and the Red Cross would also provide aid in Chile.

But he said few DEC member charities had a permanent physical presence in Chile, so they were "not likely to be major players" in the recovery effort.

The earthquake, which had a magnitude of 8.8, hit central areas of Chile on Saturday, killing at least 700 people.


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