Earthquake in Central Italy: How to Help

In a race against time, the search continues unabated in the hope of finding people still alive.

Aug. 26, 2016
By Ylenia Granitto

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Words can­not explain the sor­row in the eyes and in the voice of the sur­vivors, of those who have lost their loved ones, of those who have lost every­thing. At 3:36 AM on August 24, a mag­ni­tude 6.2 earth­quake struck Central Italy. The epi­cen­ter was in an area between Latium, Umbria, Marche and Abruzzo.

The shake involved a dozen munic­i­pal­i­ties and has vir­tu­ally razed the vil­lages of Amatrice and Accumoli, in the province of Rieti (Latium), and Arquata and Pescara del Tronto, in the province of Ascoli Piceno (Marche). At the time of writ­ing, 278 peo­ple have died and 387 have been injured.

From the first moment hun­dreds of res­cuers have been work­ing to give first aid and find the miss­ing per­sons, in many cases trapped in the rub­ble. In a race against time, the search con­tin­ues unabated in the hope of find­ing peo­ple still alive and, so far, 238 have been saved.

More than 5,400 res­cue work­ers includ­ing fire­fight­ers, mil­i­tary forces, canine units, Red Cross, Civil Protection, asso­ci­a­tions and many, many vol­un­teers are col­lab­o­rat­ing in a big wave of sol­i­dar­ity. Italy is show­ing her most beau­ti­ful face.

I Immediately con­tacted the emer­gency med­ical ser­vice and I coor­di­nated with them to come and help,” a vol­un­teer doc­tor, Brunella Pirozzi, told Olive Oil Times. She had just arrived in Sant’Angelo, a munic­i­pal­ity in Amatrice.

Antonio Nardelli

The roads are blocked, there are piles of rub­ble every­where and some vil­lages are com­pletely col­lapsed. It is dread­ful. But now it is time to effec­tively help these peo­ple. There are many injured, some of them in a crit­i­cal con­di­tion, who need sup­port to grad­u­ally return to their nor­mal lives. Right now, the only thing that mat­ters is to assist them with proper care.”

Many orga­ni­za­tions are plan­ning fundrais­ers. We strongly pro­mote a col­lec­tion,” said the coun­cilor of the Italian Red Cross, Paola Fioroni. We are respond­ing with a coor­di­nated and effi­cient action to the needs of the com­mu­nity that hope­fully soon will start over.”

To make dona­tions to the Italian Red Cross you can go to their web­site, which also accepts use­ful goods, like water, plas­tic uten­sils, long-life food, new clothes, per­sonal hygiene prod­ucts. There has been so much gen­eros­ity there is an excess of some house­hold items.

Meanwhile, expres­sions of sol­i­dar­ity come from every­where. President Obama called the pres­i­dent of the Italian Republic, Sergio Mattarella, to offer help and assis­tance.

An ini­tia­tive was launched by the food blog­ger Paolo Campana with a call to restau­rants around the world. One of the most affected vil­lage, Amatrice, is the birth­place of the famous Amatriciana pasta, made with cured pork cheek, pecorino cheese, tomato and extra vir­gin olive oil. For every dish of Amatriciana ordered, €2 will be donated to the peo­ple of Amatrice and the areas hit by the earth­quake,” Campana pro­posed.


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