Buddhist Compassion Relief Tzu Chi Foundation

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Home Global Activities Asia Tzu Chi Begins Relief Effort for Indonesian Earthquake Survivors

Tzu Chi Begins Relief Effort for Indonesian Earthquake Survivors

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The Tzu Chi Foundation has begun its relief for the victims of the devastating earthquake in Indonesia. Just after 5.00 p.m. on September 28, the quake, with a magnitude of 7.5, struck the province of Central Sulawesi; it generated a powerful tsunami. More than 800 people were killed and the death toll is likely to rise, according to the National Disaster Mitigation Agency. At least 500 people are seriously injured.

On October 1, the first group of Tzu Chi volunteers, numbering 6 people, reached Makassar, the city nearest to the affected area that has a Tzu Chi presence. Because transport links to the area have been blocked, many wounded people have been taken to Makassar for treatment. So the volunteers first went there to care for the wounded and wait for the situation in the affected area to improve; then, working with the Indonesian military, they will go to Palu, the capital of the province and the worst-hit area, and provide the victims with the medical materials and tents which they need.

In preparation for the delivery of these medical materials, the Indonesia branch of the Foundation mobilized volunteers on the afternoon of September 30 to make packages of the materials. To obtain a detailed understanding of the disaster, the director of the branch organized an emergency meeting of the volunteers and sent the team to Makassar to provide care to the wounded.

Volunteer Hong Tjhin said: “According to the information from the disaster area, at least 150-400 wounded will be moved from Palu to Makassar and receive medical help. We have volunteers in Makassar and can provide the help these wounded need.”

On the island of Central Sulawesi, the only volunteers are in the branch in Makassar. According to the preliminary relief plan, the volunteers in Jakarta will take a plane from there to Makassar. They will join the local volunteers and wait for a suitable opportunity to go together to Palu.

Volunteer Hong Tjhin said: “We will co-operate with the Indonesian military and deliver the relief goods to the disaster area, from Jakarta to Makassar and then Palu. The volunteers will get a detailed understanding of the needs of the victims and can provide medical items and tents.”

On the morning of October 1, the first team of 6 volunteers had already reached Makassar from Jakarta. After meeting volunteers in the city, they went to the hospitals to care for the wounded.

At the same time, DaAi Television in Indonesia started to raise donations. One of the station’s staff said: “This fund-raising will be like arousing love for the survivors. It does not matter how much you donate, what matters is your heart.”

Bring your hands together and pray fervently for those in the disaster area. We hope that each blessing can bring to Palu the people they need.

Report by Great Love Television in Indonesia, October 1, 2018

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