Front left to right: Wayne Wong, IOM National Program Support Officer; Waymine Towai, Executive Director for National Emergency Management Office; Marisol Perez, USAID’s Deputy Coordinator for the Pacific Islands; Paula Miller, Country Coordinator, Palau for USAID and Portia Franz, IOM National Program Support Officer and back left to right: Mr. Matthew Kupchik, Our Ocean Advisor from DC and Minister Dale Jenkins, Ministry of Education.

Efforts by the Republic of Palau to fight COVID-19 have received a boost following a donation of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) that includes face shields, examination gloves, respiratory masks, protective goggles, medical gowns, and hand sanitizer.

The material was made available by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) through a project funded by USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance.

Front fourth: from left, Madam Vice President/Minister of Justice/Chairperson of National Emergency Committee, J. Uduch Sengebau Senior. Front fifth-seven from left, US Ambassador John Hennessey-Niland, USAID Paula Miller and Marisol Perez, USAID’s Deputy Coordinator for the Pacific Islands; and at center back- Mr. Matthew Kupchik, Our Ocean Advisor; front eight: Wayne Wong, IOM National Program Support Officer; rest: Members of National Emergency Committee, NEMO Executive Director and Staff

Speaking during the handover ceremony, US Ambassador John Hennessey-Niland expressed support for the partnership between Palau, the US government, USAID and IOM. “I am eager to be in these types of events where we are actually looking after our people, delivering assistance that is needed and making a difference,” he said.

IOM Chief of Mission Salvatore Sortino commended Palau for it’s handling of the pandemic, especially working to ensure that its borders remained open. “We hope these contributions of personal protective equipment can aid in Palau’s ongoing efforts to simultaneously keep its economy going and keeping its population safe,” he said.

Madam Vice President/Minister of Justice/Chairperson of National Emergency Committee, J. Uduch Sengebau Senior said the PPE supplies would be distributed to the Ministries of Education and Health as well as frontline agencies

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