Monday, September 8, 2008
World Vision commits Rs. 8 Crore for Bihar flood survivors
Chennai, Sept 4 (ANI/Business Wire India): World Vision India today committed Rs. eight crores to respond to the mounting challenges facing the survivors of Bihar floods. This will respond to the immediate relief, recovery and rehabilitation needs of 125,000 people (around 25,000 families) in the Madhepura district, one of the worst affected by the floods. Over the last three days around 10,000 people (2000 families) have been served with immediate food relief."Initially, we were looking at close to Rs.4 crores to reach the people on the ground with the most essential needs- cooked food, dry rations, family kits and shelter material," says Franklin Joseph, Director- Humanitarian Emergency Affairs, World Vision India, "but by looking at the number of the people in the camps and needs that would arise, we have added temporary shelter material, hygiene kits and water containers to the survival kits."World Vision is providing chuda (flat rice), sathu (lentil meal) and jaggery (country sugar), candles and match boxes as survival kits to people who are coming into the camps around the town of Saharsa, a neighbouring district. People in the camps are also being provided with cooked food for lunch and dinner. Reports say that the water is slowly starting to recede. But the challenges for the people who are in the camps are many. Two boys, Pappu, 14 and Deepak, 10 have been missing for a week now and their parents have started to lose hope. Their neighbors suspect that the raging waters have washed both of them away to the unknown, something the parents are not willing to accept. But witnesses said, they found no trace of the two boys. Several families are looking for members they have lost as they fled the waters.In one of the relief camps, ten-month old Priyansu with boils all over her body is sleeping on her mother's lap. As she hold her baby close, says her mother Rina, "She doesn't cry much and sleeps well at night and I breastfeed her." Finding medical help for this condition in the relief camp would be a challenge.The urgent needs are for health care, clean drinking water and protection for children. We are assessing the needs as quickly as possible so that we can put in place additional programmes to respond to the health needs of the people in the camps," says Franklin Joseph, adding that "Protection of children will be another major focus."World Vision has responded to every major disaster in India in the last few decades including the tsunami, Kashmir earthquake and the recent floods in Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Kerala, Orissa and Assam. World Vision India is also member of the NGO steering committee of the National Disaster Management Authority.