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Operation USA

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Disaster Aid, Disaster Preparedness & Relief Services, Economic Development, International, International Development, International Economic Development, International Relief, Microfinance


OperationUSA is an international relief agency that helps communities at home and abroad overcome the effects ofdisasters, disease and endemic poverty by providing privately-funded relief,reconstruction and development aid. 

Working with grass-roots partners on the ground, Operation USA provides material and financial assistance necessary in the face of a disaster, as well as to combat the effects of systemic poverty. Dedicated to rebuilding with commitment and listening to communities’voices to determine the best way to assist them, OperationUSA stays in the field long after many others leave. Long-term projects aresupported that promote education and health services, sustainable development, leadershipbuilding, income generating activities and advocacy on behalf of vulnerablepeople worldwide.

Results: Over 30+ years, we have been awarded 4 stars from Charity Navigator, designation by Worth Magazine as "One of America's Best 100 Charities" and have scored a number of "firsts" among relief agencies responding to crises in Asia, Africa, the Middle east and Latin America. In California, we support over 100 community health clinics; and 50 more on the Gulf Coast since Hurricane Katrina struck.

Target demographics: We are global disaster relief and development providers focusing on disaster victims, with an emphasis on women and children.

Direct beneficiaries per year: over 1,000,000

Geographic areas served: global USA and 99 Countries

Programs: From the Vietnamese "Boat People", a million of whom streamed out of Vietnam to five neighboring countries in 1979, to the millions affected by the India, Turkey, Pakistan, Indonesia and Taiwan earthquakes, Operation USA has provided assistance to people in need for over 29 years, including those affected by HURRICANE KATRINA and HURRICANE RITA. Operation USA pioneered the concept of "Smart Aid": carefully assessing needs and matching them with the rapid delivery of corporate supply donations. To date, we have worked in 99 countries, many of which faced severe problems with refugees and internally displaced persons. Whether fleeing from manmade or natural disasters, uprooted people need appropriate food, medicines and shelter, and the continuing educational needs of children must be met.

Operation USA's role has been to generate resources to help large numbers of people cope with disaster. Among the problems refugees face is one of well intentioned but poorly focused aid projects. Often, useless supplies are gathered and sent directly to refugee camps. These supplies (i.e., outdated pharmaceuticals and inappropriate food and clothing) overload fragile relief channels. Public cynicism and apathy increase as these efforts produce few worthwhile results and generate negative press reports. Operation USA's programs avoid these problems through needs assessments, professionally-handled shipping and monitoring of all relief delivered through partner agencies.

Community Stories

2 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters



Rating: 5

Wow. I've been a supporter and a fan for 35 years They have the lowest percentage of overhead of any international relief and development group I have ever seen. Their slogan, "If you give -- it gets there" is absolutely true,

4 RichardWalden

Board Member

Rating: 5

Operation USA is widely lauded among other international disaster relief and economic development organizations for its creative, effective and rapid response to disasters; it stays long after others have left; it does NOT accept any US Government funding and is thereby independent and not an adjunct of US foreign policy. It shared the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize as a key part of the Int'l Campaign To Ban Landmines with its unique focus on advancing the technology of landmine detection and removal.