Brussels, the capital city of Belgium, is currently reeling from a devastating terror attack on Brussels Airport and a local metro station during early-morning rush hour on Tuesday. At least 31 people are reported dead, with upwards of 135 people injured.
Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel said the country's terrorism alert had been raised to the highest level, with restrictions placed at the borders and on public transportation.
"In this tragic moment, this dark moment for our country, I will call on everyone to show calm and solidarity," Michel said. "This is a difficult challenge."
In the immediate aftermath of the attacks, one of the most pressing challenges is how to support survivors of the chaos. On social media, users have been showing their solidarity with the hashtag #JeSuisBruxelles. But there are also more tangible ways to have a direct impact.
Even those outside Belgium’s borders can help those dealing directly with the frightening situation. From supporting organizations that are providing relief on the ground to checking in with friends and family to see if they are safe, here are a few ways you can make a difference.
This post will be updated as more options become available.
1. Donate to organizations on the ground. Some organizations have already announced emergency relief efforts in the immediate area of the attacks. A few are listed below, with details of the relief they are providing and donation information.
Belgian Red Cross
#BrusselsAttacks Nos équipes secours à #Maelbeek https://t.co/Ubdg17PCrt pic.twitter.com/cHldQVXy2Q
— Croix-Rouge.be (@CroixRougeBE) March 22, 2016
Teams from La Croix-Rouge de Belgique, the Belgian branch of the Red Cross, have mobilized to bring relief to those injured in the attacks.
About 60 emergency vehicles have been dispatched with more than 100 rescuers on the ground. The organization has also set up a reception center to accommodate people in shock, and has psychological relief teams available by phone. For complete details of all their efforts, which is being periodically updated, visit here.
For donations, the Belgian Red Cross is directing contributions to their standard donate page. Though there isn’t yet an option for the attack specifically, all funds go directly to the organization’s efforts.
The Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Foundation for Peace
#Brussels attacks Survivors Assistance Network advice https://t.co/IcMyzhNLqA
— foundation4peace.org (@peacecentre) March 22, 2016
The Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Foundation for Peace manages a Survivor's Assistance Network to provide support in the immediate aftermath of a terror attack. The organization has consultants available by phone and email, and has also issued advice to the public of best practical and emotional practices in the direct aftermath of an attack.
For information on how to connect with a consultant, visit here. To donate to the organization to help support its efforts, visit here.
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