CRS receives Microsoft grant to improve emergency response
BALTIMORE, Md. (Catholic Online) – Catholic Relief Services has received a multi-million dollar grant from software giant Microsoft to help improve the emergency response and relief operations to enable more efficient and rapid communication between nongovernmental organizations during crises.
CRS received $3,280,716 to enhance emergency response and relief operations through the use of advanced technology, according to a Feb. 28 statement from the official international humanitarian agency of the Catholic community in the United States.
The grant, according to the agency, will allow CRS to implement and benefit from the latest Microsoft products and technologies, enabling all CRS domestic and overseas offices to use the same versions of the main Microsoft business applications. Specifically, the grant will enable the agency to upgrade its core software in 79 countries in Africa, Latin America, the Middle East and the United States. The software grant has already been distributed to CRS offices, and, in many cases, is already in use.
“The generous software grant from Microsoft is welcomed and appreciated, and it will help all recipient agencies to better communicate in times of emergency,” said Paul Cunningham, CRS management information director. “More than the significant dollar value it represents, this exemplifies a growing, active partnership among humanitarian organizations and the private sector, here represented by Microsoft, to help fight the challenges of poverty worldwide.”
“Microsoft is proud to support Catholic Relief Services in its efforts to drive adoption of technology to enhance the sharing of information when it is most needed,” said Microsoft Mid-Atlantic States District General Manager Michael Ferreri. “At Microsoft we believe it is critical to help improve humanitarian efforts through financial donations, technical resources and the volunteer efforts of our employees worldwide. This grant is directed at improving collaboration, communication and connections among various agencies, which will result in better service to communities in need.”
This is not the first time CRS has received monies from the global technology giant. Last year, CRS partnered with Microsoft to develop a SharePoint Portal tailored to accelerate global relief response to the devastating South Asian earthquake and tsunami. It gave the agency a way to foster better and faster communication, collaboration and knowledge sharing among its staff operating in the region and at headquarters.
CRS (www.crs.org) provides assistance to people in 99 countries and territories.
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Pope Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for January 2013
General Intention: The Faith of Christians. That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him.
Missionary Intention: Middle Eastern Christians. That the Christian communities of the Middle East, often discriminated against, may receive from the Holy Spirit the strength of fidelity and perseverance.
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