The UAE helps friends and neighbors when disaster strikes. Its global foreign aid and development budget totals $15 billion annually, with donations and in-kind support made directly to governments, as well as through organizations such as the Red Crescent.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the UAE provided $100 million for relief work to the United States. The donation, made directly to the US government, has been used for a variety of recovery and rebuilding projects and helped thousands of children and families.
A portion of the funds supported the rebuilding and recovery of primary and secondary schools as well as institutions of higher education in the US Gulf Coast. The programs were overseen by the US Department of Education.
Schools in Louisiana and Mississippi received grants to rebuild school libraries, enhance early learning centers, upgrade labs, among many projects. Schools and organizations receiving support ranged from Dwight Eisenhower Elementary Charter School and Orleans Parish to Xavier University and University of Southern Mississippi.
The donation also supported Katrina Aid Today, a consortium of agencies providing help to individual families affected by the disaster. Katrina Aid Today partners have collectively worked with 68,782 households, representing approximately 183,266 people. Nearly all were displaced from their homes and received assistance to find housing, furniture, food and other basic needs. The lead agency for Katrina Aid Today was the United Methodist Committee on Relief.