By Mongolia Relief Team (Originally in Mongolian)
In mid-April 2015, a series of wildfires spread across southern Siberia in the Republic of Khakassia and in eastern Siberia in Zabaykalsky Krai, Russia. The Khakassia fires were first set to clear out dry grass for agriculture; however, due to strong winds and dry weather, the fires spread quickly, claiming 29 lives and displacing over 6,000 people in Khakassia. In Zabaykalsky Krai, separate wildfires cost the lives of four individuals near the city of Chita. The fires also damaged many buildings in the nearby Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region of China.
On April 23, carrying out Master’s loving instruction to always help those in need, our Mongolian relief team went to Khakassia and met with the chairman of the local Red Cross, Mr. Vitaly L. Garder, to discuss ways to help the affected people. Mr. Garder informed the government officials of Khakassia about our arrival and the Ministry of Education kindly suggested that we contribute packages of stationery and school bags to 490 students who had lost all their possessions in the fire.
After receiving details about the students, we went to a wholesale stationery store and purchased school bags and 490 packages of school supplies using US$10,985 contributed by Master. The supplies included 53 USB memory sticks we bought especially for the graduating high school students. The store owner, Mr. Igori, was extremely touched and grateful for our assistance and even offered to deliver the packages free of charge.
We then visited one of the most affected regions of Khakassia, the Shira District, and distributed 160 packages with help from the Red Cross. The distribution took place at a local high school where the students’ guardians received the packages. Many young students came out with big smiles on their faces while their parents or grandparents expressed their gratitude to Master. The remaining 330 packages were entrusted to the Red Cross to be distributed in seven other affected regions in Khakassia.
Mr. Garder expressed his special thanks to Master and presented a certificate of gratitude to our Association on behalf of the affected families and the Red Cross. We are deeply grateful to our beloved Master for giving us this opportunity to help our Russian brothers and sisters.
Expenditures by Supreme Master Ching Hai for Fire Relief Work in the Republic of Khakassia, Russia
|Supplies for students (notebooks, pens, pencils, highlighters, markers, crayons, erasers, rulers, scissors etc.)||356,209.62||A|
|School bags, USB memory sticks and other supplies||225,912.91||B, C|
|Total|| RUB 582,122.53