WASHINGTON (Army News Service, March 12, 2010) -- The Army chief of chaplains has asked Soldiers and their families to again consider providing assistance to earthquake victims -- this time for those in Chile.

A similar designated offering was collected from across the Army in January to provide relief for victims of the earthquake in Haiti. Then, Soldiers and their families donated $574,285 for relief in that country, with money being sent to the Red Cross to provide assistance.

The Army's chief of chaplains this week requested installation and medical center chaplains to hold a designated offering no later than the weekend of April 11 for victims of the Chile earthquake two weeks ago. Chaplains will let those in attendance at services know when funds collected will be designated for Chile relief.

According to the Office of the Chief of Chaplains, the designated offerings will be sent to the relief agency of the garrison's choice to help the Chile earthquake victims.

The nation of Chile -- on the western shore of South America -- was rocked by a magnitude 8.8 earthquake, Feb. 27. It is estimated nearly 800 Chileans died as a result of the quake -- the nation's largest in 40 years. In 1960, the country experienced a magnitude 9.5 earthquake -- the largest quake in world recorded history.

The Haiti earthquake, though smaller on the Richter scale than Chile's, killed more than 150,000 in the Port-au-Prince area alone. Survivors of that disaster are receiving more than half a million dollars from Army chapel donations to the Red Cross.

"The generous contribution of the men and women of the United States Army and their families is critical to the ability of the American Red Cross to provide help and hope for the people of Haiti during their time of need," said Neal Litvack, chief development officer of the American Red Cross. "We are continuing to provide supplies and disaster management staff to Haiti in the aftermath of this earthquake, and are very grateful for the support of servicemembers and their families of our humanitarian mission."

In recent years, the Army has designated collections for several disaster relief efforts, including Haiti, the Indian Ocean Tsunami in 2004, and Hurricane Katrina relief in 2005. For Katrina, Soldiers and their families contributed about $400,000.