More Than 100,000 Tsunami Survivors Receiving Help from Samaritan’s Purse
Franklin Graham Says Recovery Work Will Take Years
Samaritan's Purse is providing housing, water, food, and other emergency assistance to more than 100,000 people in three countries devastated by the tsunami and earthquakes in the Indian Ocean.
Samaritan's Purse president Franklin Graham said after visiting Sri Lanka and Indonesia that the destruction was the worst he has ever seen in his decades of international relief work. "People who have been through the tsunami need our compassion, our help, and our prayers," he said. "It will take years for many of these communities to recover."
To meet the unprecedented long-term needs, Samaritan's Purse has committed $30 million to tsunami recovery, making this the largest disaster relief project in the organization's 35-year history. In coastal communities throughout the disaster zone, Samaritan's Purse is providing:
Housing: More than 2,000 families in Indonesia and 5,000 families in Sri Lanka have received emergency shelter assistance. Work is underway to rebuild thousands of permanent houses.
Water: More than 35,000 displaced people in Sri Lanka depend on water filters set up by Samaritan's Purse. In Indonesia, more than 4,000 families have had their wells cleaned or have received water-cleaning kits.
Food: More than 15,000 families in Sri Lanka have received emergency kits that include stoves and kitchen utensils. A program serving several displacement camps in Indonesia has fed 5,000 families with nutritious soup.
Healthcare: Helicopter-dispatched health teams have treated more than 1,400 for malaria and measles in isolated Indonesian villages and have distributed more than 25,000 mosquito nets to prevent the spread of malaria.
Livelihoods: Samaritan's Purse is replacing hundreds of fishing boats and nets in India, Indonesia, and Sri Lanka, so that thousands of fishermen will be able to support their families.
An airplane and helicopter sent to Indonesia in the aftermath of the December 26 tsunami enabled Samaritan's Purse to respond immediately to the latest earthquake March 28, bringing emergency supplies and airlifting the injured from the island of Nias.
Samaritan's Purse is now processing hundreds of thousands of shoe boxes filled with gifts designed to meet the special needs of children who lost almost everything in the tsunami. The boxes include clothing and school items as well as toys and treats. Packed by individuals nationwide for a special Easter collection by Operation Christmas Child, these boxes are being shipped to India, Indonesia, and Sri Lanka.
To support the tsunami recovery efforts, contact Samaritan's Purse at (800) 567-8183 or www.samaritanspurse.org. President Bush's USA Freedom Corps and USAID include Samaritan's Purse on their websites as a donation resource for tsunami relief efforts.
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