By Formosa Relief Team (Originally in Chinese)
Myanmar (Burma) experienced continuous, heavy rain that started in mid-July 2015 and lasted for weeks, claiming more than 100 lives and affecting close to one million people. Twelve states in Myanmar (Burma) were impacted by the flood, which caused damage to roads, bridges and buildings. More than 3,000 schools were destroyed and over 680,000 hectares of farmland were flooded. Minbya, Mrauk U, Kyauktaw, and Buthidaung in Rakhine State were the hardest hit areas.
Following Supreme Master Ching Hai’s loving instruction, and with US$10,000 from Master’s fund, one of our Association members from Taichung, Formosa went to Myanmar (Burma) and formed a relief team with our Association members there. On August 6, we drove to the city of Bago, the capital of the Bago Region in the southern central part of the country. We purchased relief items including 120 boxes of instant noodles (30 bags of noodles per box), 40 bags of rice (40 kilograms per bag), 420 bottles of water (1.5 liters per bottle), lighters and candles. We delivered the items to the abbot of a temple that served as the distribution center. The local village chief handed out the relief items to the villagers.
On August 7 we flew to Sittwe, the capital of Rakhine State. We went to downtown Sittwe to purchase more relief supplies including 240 boxes of instant noodles, 215 bags of rice and 1,800 liters of water. On August 8, we rented a vehicle and went to the disaster relief center in Kyauktaw, which was our first stop. A separate truck carrying the items left earlier so it could be unloaded before we arrived. We went to Mrauk U for our second stop. The supplies were delivered by the truck to the relief center, which distributed them to the victims. In the afternoon, we went to the disaster areas in the remote region of Mrauk U by boat and distributed the supplies and cash aid in three villages along the way. After we returned, we went to nearby villages that were affected by the flood and again handed out needed supplies and financial assistance. In total, we distributed relief items to 272 families in six villages and each family received MMK 12,000.
On August 9, we learned from the staff at our hotel that a nearby orphanage school operated by nuns needed assistance. We immediately went there to check the condition of the school. The only bridge leading in and out of the school collapsed. There were 300 students, but only one classroom was still functioning and there was only one teacher. We gave all of our remaining disaster relief funds to the orphanage to help students pay their living expenses, and to assist the school in rebuilding as well as hiring additional teachers. Thanks to Master’s blessing, we successfully completed our disaster relief work.
Expenditures by Supreme Master Ching Hai for Flood Relief Work in Myanmar (Burma)
|Food (instant noodles, rice and bottled water)||7,042,100||A|
|Lighters, candles and labor fee||129,900||B|
|Cash contributions to flood victims||3,264,000||C|
|Cash contribution to the school for orphans||1,834,000||D|
|Total|| MMK 12,270,000
The relief team members paid for their own transportation, food and lodging.