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Large machinery is staged Padang ready to begin removal of rubble after heavy earthquake damage on Sept. 30 and Oct. 1, 2009.  Access for the removal equipment to small Indonesian villages has been more difficult due to narrow bumpy roads.    (ACT photo by Rainer Lang)

Large machinery is staged Padang ready to begin removal of rubble after heavy earthquake damage on Sept. 30 and Oct. 1, 2009. Access for the removal equipment to small Indonesian villages has been more difficult due to narrow bumpy roads. (ACT photo by Rainer Lang)

MCC increases Asia Disasters response to $250,000

Linda Espenshade
October 14, 2009

 

In response to the needs of flooding and earthquake survivors in Asia, Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) is increasing its appeal for donations to $250,000.
 
The additional contributions will allow MCC and its partners to respond to extensive flooding damage in southern India and Cambodia and to provide permanent housing for people in Indonesia, where earthquakes devastated entire villages.
 
Already included in the initial $100,000 campaign is relief for flooding in the Philippines and Vietnam, caused by September’s Typhoon Ketsana. Short-term relief efforts and temporary housing for Indonesian earthquake survivors were also included in the initial amount.
 
In India, heavy rains in late September caused flooding in the Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka districts, killing at least 226 people and leaving about 1 million people homeless, according to Church’s Auxiliary for Social Action (CASA), an MCC partner. Indian news sources also reported extensive destruction of crops and some livestock in these farming communities.
 
Although a few major news organizations reported on the flooding, the emergency has largely gone unnoticed outside of India.
 
MCC also will work through its partner, Mennonite Christian Service Fellowship of India, a service and fellowship organization of the six Mennonite and Brethren in Christ churches in India. The exact means of assistance is still being determined.    
 
In Indonesia, MCC will rebuild homes in the village of Guci, where about 95 percent of the homes were destroyed, and in the city of Padang. MCC’s partner, Mennonite Diakonial Service, is currently providing health care, trauma healing exercises and locally purchased relief packets of food and other necessities. Mennonite Diakonial Service is the disaster response arm of the Gereja Kristen Muria Indonesia, the Muria Mennonite Synod.
 
Cambodia is included in the updated Asia Disasters appeal because it also experienced destructive flooding from Typhoon Ketsana. The storm killed more than 40 people and destroyed tens of thousands of rice paddies in Cambodia. MCC representatives in Southeast Asia are working with potential partner organizations to determine the best way to help flooding victims recover.
 
MCC continues to monitor needs in Laos, but initial reports indicate that other organizations are managing the needs there.
In the Philippines, MCC worker Bruce Glick, of Millersburg, Ohio, is in conversation with Integrated Mennonite Churches to determine the best way to provide short-term relief.
 
In Vietnam, assessment of the need continues in cooperation with potential partners.
Financial contributions may be made to any MCC office, online at donate.mcc.org or by telephoning toll free:
In Canada: 1-888-622-6337                                     
In the U.S.: 1-888-563-4676
Gifts should be designated for MCC’s “Asia Disasters.”