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Malteser International Americas Announces Move of American-based Headquarters to New York City

Strategic decision brings disaster relief organization to the epicenter of the humanitarian world

Contact: Jill Watson, Malteser International Americas, 305-448-5111

NEW YORK, April 7, 2017 /Christian Newswire/ -- In a time of more frequent natural disasters exacerbated by the effects of climate change as well as a global refugee crisis displacing more than 65 million people, Malteser International Americas, an affiliate of Malteser International, the relief agency of the Order of Malta, today announced that its U.S.-based headquarters will relocate to New York City, a thriving humanitarian hub.

The humanitarian aid and development organization will relocate from Miami to the Archdiocese Building of New York in Midtown Manhattan this summer. Beginning June 1, 2017, the new address will be: Malteser International Americas, 1011 First Avenue, Suite 1322, New York, NY 10022. The building also houses the Order of Malta American Association, Catholic Charities and other Catholic entities.

The relocation elevates Malteser International Americas as an even more accessible leader in the international relief and development community, and positions it alongside global embassies and missions, including the Permanent Observer Mission of the Sovereign Order of Malta to the UN, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, International Rescue Committee, Doctors Without Borders, UNICEF, and others.

Malteser International Americas made the decision to relocate to Manhattan after three years in Miami to be more accessible to the United Nations, international humanitarian partners, and other NGOs. Greater geographical access to the humanitarian community places the organization in position for long-term, sustainable growth. Malteser International is currently a strategic partner of the World Health Organization's Global Health Cluster.

"The decision to relocate Malteser International Americas' U.S.-based office to the New York City region aligns with Malteser International's global growth plan, allowing greater reach and input in how to affect change in the lives of those vulnerable families we help every day," said Thomas A. Wessels, President, Malteser International Americas. "We worked closely with the Order of Malta American Association and Cardinal Dolan's staff to make this relocation a reality, and we look forward to strengthening our relationship further."

"The relocation will position the organization as a greater asset to the humanitarian and faith-based communities. With over 60 years of service worldwide, and greater awareness in the Western Hemisphere, the move will also sustain the organization for another 60 more, and beyond," said Ravi Tripptrap, Executive Director, Malteser International Americas.

"For 900 years, the Order of Malta has come to the aid of the poor and the sick. And it is to a large degree through the relief expertise of Malteser International that we are able to fully realize the scale of need around the world, and therefore reach those who are suffering the most, particularly in disaster situations," said Ambassador Oscar de Rojas, Permanent Observer of the Sovereign Order of Malta to the United Nations. "We welcome the establishment of the Malteser Americas office in New York City, which should help strengthen cooperation activities between Malteser International and the United Nations."

In January 2017, Malteser International Americas welcomed Thomas. A Wessels, former First Vice President at Merrill Lynch and retired Major General, as President of the Board. Last year, Malteser International Americas was at the helm of international relief and tackled some of the greatest challenges facing the Americas:

  • Implemented immediate relief measures in Haiti following Hurricane Matthew to provide 1,200 families with critical hygiene materials to reduce the risk of another deadly cholera epidemic, and dispensed clean-up kits and aid to restore livelihood;
  • Took action in Colombia to educate and protect 1,200 pregnant women and their unborn babies from the Zika virus by providing prevention kits to often neglected populations where stagnant water is an ideal breeding ground for mosquitos;
  • Reduced maternal and child mortality in Mexico by giving 100 mothers and pregnant mothers life-saving HIV medicine so they are able to protect their most precious gift – their unborn baby – from contracting the disease. Last year, 2 healthy babies were born in our program without the disease. Mothers also receive mental health services to improve their lives;
  • Achieved food security in the poverty-stricken outskirts of Lima, Peru where we operate a soup kitchen for over 50 children who receive hot, nutritious meals every day after school;
  • Launched a fresh water program to bring essential water to almost 50,000 people in the southwest of Haiti, where the worst drought in 35 years has put those already experiencing profound poverty and extreme vulnerability in further jeopardy; and
  • Supported the LaFayette Home Repair program in Louisiana and Mississippi – a partnership between the Order of Malta Federal Association, Malteser International Americas, Rebuilding Together, & Catholic Charities of Lafayette – to help flood victims rebuild after 7 trillion gallons of rain flooded the region and destroyed homes.

About Malteser International Americas: Malteser International Americas is an affiliate of Malteser International, the humanitarian relief organization of the Order of Malta. Through our U.S. headquarters, Malteser International Americas provides immediate disaster response and preparedness, as well as vital healthcare and nutrition, and clean water and sanitation to vulnerable people in North America, Latin America and the Caribbean. Visit www.orderofmaltarelief.org to learn more.