After the August 2008 war, AFG responded quickly, creating the War Relief Fund and mobilizing $81 thousand through the generous donations of people like you. The funds were used to provide support and basic aid for the thousands left homeless and adrift in the city’s abandoned government buildings, schools and kindergartens. In addition to addressing immediate needs, AFG began creating a database of information about the needs of the displaced [IDP] families.
“Shortly after the war, I visited Isani where over 2,000 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) were living in terrible conditions,” Marusya Chavchavadze, AFG’s executive director/US Office, said.
“The IDPs were living in an abandoned hospital without heat, cooking facilities and running water. They were angry and depressed, grateful for help but just wanting to go home to their villages where none would ever be able to return. One old woman stood in front of me in her freezing room, with tears silently running down her face. Her husband stared at me from his bed where he was trying to keep warm, too traumatized to say a word.”
While AFG Georgia was busy responding to the IDPs’ immediate humanitarian needs, it became clear that, in addition to food, gas burners and other staples, the people desperately needed to regain a sense of normalcy and dignity. AFG started sustainable programs designed to meet those needs starting with two basic needs: employment and childcare.