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Humanitarian Needs From Georgia Conflict Still Growing, World Vision Warns
Date:8/13/2008

-- World Vision beginning assistance in North Ossetia, expands aid in Georgia

-- Agency's Child-Friendly Spaces will provide safe place for children to play, learn, heal

-- "Bullets were flying around like hail," young mother tells World Vision staff

TBILISI, Georgia, Aug. 13 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- As violence in and around South Ossetia continues, World Vision teams in both Georgia and the Russian Federation are responding to the increasing humanitarian needs of children and families who have fled the conflict zone. Some 100,000 people in all are estimated to have been uprooted from their homes, and are in need of shelter and emergency support.

In North Ossetia, World Vision is providing medical supplies such as bandages, crutches, pain relievers, syringes and antibiotics to the wounded through partners. The Christian humanitarian agency also plans to open Child-Friendly Spaces to provide children with a safe and structured environment where they can obtain informal education and interact with other children.

"People are continuing to arrive in North Ossetia by the busload, and many civilians are wounded," said Siobhan Kimmerle, World Vision's national director in the Russian Federation. "World Vision has also found that many families have been separated from their loved ones in the chaos."

Meanwhile, the Christian humanitarian agency continues to assist civilians who fled south into Georgia proper.

"The humanitarian needs here are growing exponentially, faster than the combined agencies can keep up," warned David Womble, national director of World Vision in Georgia. "We continue to look at the tip of the iceberg."

World Vision's team in Georgia has been asked by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the World Food Program and the government of Georgia to increase its response as quickly as possible to meet the immediate food, non-food and health needs of internally displaced people. Ev
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SOURCE World Vision
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