By Indonesia Relief Team (Originally in Indonesian)
On July 2, 2013, a 6.2 magnitude earthquake struck Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam Province of Sumatra Island, North West Sumatra, Indonesia. Bener Meriah and Central Aceh districts were the areas most affected by this earthquake. At least 35 people lost their lives and hundreds more sustained injuries. Three strong aftershocks triggered landslides along the Bireun-Takengon mountain range, isolating several villages. The earthquake damaged or destroyed over 15,900 houses and 600 other buildings.
Supreme Master Ching Hai, much concerned about the situation, contributed US$10,000 for relief efforts and requested our local Association members from Indonesia to organize and send a relief team to the affected areas.
Our Association members from Indonesia organized a relief team of seven people and started to purchase the necessary items to deliver to Bener Meriah and Central Aceh. We bought tents, floor mats, medicine and sarongs. We also purchased food items such as instant noodles, rice, instant green bean drinks, instant soybean drinks, biscuits, baby food and cooking oil, all of which were vegan.
Our relief team arrived at the affected areas on July 4, 2013 and was welcomed by rescue volunteers from the Homeland Defense Volunteer Army known as Patriots; Mr. Amin, manager of the Honda motorcycle company of Bener Meriah Regency; and the team of former Bener Meriah Regent, Mr. Tagore Abu Bakar. The volunteers organized their own relief teams and provided four jeeps for our Association members to deliver the relief aid to those in need in remote places which, due to the hilly terrain, were inaccessible by small cars.
That same day, our relief team, assisted by the search and rescue teams, went to the places that had not yet been reached by the aid teams. We started from Pante Raya, the relief center, and traveled about 1.5 hours to reach the Sere Pingen Village. There we found 40 householders whose homes were damaged or destroyed. Our team distributed the relief material that had already been packaged to each of the households, as well as Supreme Master Ching Hai’s book From Crisis to Peace – The Organic Vegan Way is the Answer. Also distributed to the householders were vegan guideline booklets printed by our Association members in Indonesia.
Next, our team moved to the villages of Serempah and Bah, which had been devastated by landslides and were thought to be the most severely hit areas. It was reported that about 200 families in Bah and 150 more in Serempah had lost their homes, 14 people perished and six were missing.
When our Association members reached the areas affected, the residents were very touched. They could not believe that aid could arrive so quickly, for their villages were very hard to reach using normal vehicles. They informed us that they were in need of more tents and food. As temperatures in these villages dropped as low as 4 degrees Celsius at night, those afflicted by the disaster were very grateful for the warm tents, sarongs and rice we brought for them. Our team also visited Kute Makmur Village, where we brought aid and Master’s love to 100 more households.
We thank Master for Her love and blessings, enabling the relief work to go smoothly and efficiently, and for the opportunity to serve our brethren in their time of need.
Expenditures by Supreme Master Ching Hai and Her International Association for Earthquake Relief Efforts in Central Aceh, Indonesia.
|Food (rice, noodles, cooking oil, biscuits, instant soybean drinks and baby food)||62,994,900||A|
|Daily necessities (sarongs, floor mats and tents)||61,561,100||B|
|Transportation and accommodations||12,000,000||D|
|Total|| IDR 138,799,750