Countries in the Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) region are vulnerable to a range of natural hazards, including droughts, earthquakes, floods, hurricanes, landslides, tsunamis, volcanic eruptions, and wildfires, as well as economic and political crises. Between FY 2011 and FY 2020, USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (USAID/BHA) provided humanitarian assistance in response to natural disasters and complex emergencies in the region through the former Office of Food for Peace (USAID/FFP) and Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA). Recent examples include Hurricane Dorian in The Bahamas, the ongoing complex emergency in Haiti, floods and landslides in El Salvador, wildfires in South America, and the Venezuela regional crisis.
USAID provided approximately $1.2 billion to respond to disasters in the LAC region between FY 2011 and FY 2020.
USAID/BHA support included nearly $704.4 million for emergency food and nutrition assistance—through U.S. in-kind food aid; local, regional, and international food procurement; cash transfers for food; food vouchers; and specialized nutrition products—to vulnerable populations, including indigenous communities, internally displaced persons, migrants, and refugees.
USAID/BHA assistance also included approximately $477 million for programs in agriculture; economic recovery and market systems; logistics support; health; humanitarian coordination, information management, and assessments; multipurpose cash assistance; nutrition; protection; shelter and settlements; and water, sanitation, and hygiene.
In the last decade, USAID responded to crises in 26 countries and territories in LAC, including to 73 declared disasters.
USAID frequently deployed humanitarian teams to the region, including six Disaster Assistance Response Teams (DARTs).
USAID deployed DARTs to Haiti in response to a cholera outbreak in FY 2011 and Hurricane Matthew in FY 2017; to Mexico following a major earthquake in FY 2017; to The Bahamas and across the Caribbean in response to hurricanes Irma and Maria in FY 2017; and to the Bahamas following Hurricane Dorian in FY 2019. USAID also activated multiple Washington, D.C.-based Response Management Teams (RMTs) to support coordination and response efforts in affected countries. Additionally, since FY 2018, USAID has maintained a DART and RMT to support the humanitarian response to the Venezuela regional crisis.