Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Tsunami relief

Some good work and reporting in Malaysia are being spearheaded by bloggers, among whom are bobjots, jeffooi (of Screenshots), lucia lai, and others. Good job and may their tribe increase!

On the global front, Compassion International in particular, announced that at least three projects in India and Thailand have been significantly impacted. On the eastern coast of India, Compassion-assisted families were among those who lost their homes and livelihood, and at least one sponsored child died in the tsunami.

I am impressed by their 3-phase relief initiatives which have been spelled out as follows:
Phase One : Initial Emergency Response Activities
·Kitchen providing two meals per day
·Medical treatment two-three days per week
·Emergency shelter construction
·Identification of unaccompanied children and their care
·Trauma counseling
·Distribution of basic household and hygiene kits

Phase Two : Transition Response Activities
·Distribution of dry rations
·Distribution of cooking kits
·Continued medical care
·Continued counseling
·Continued efforts to reunite children with parents

Phase Three : Long-Term Assessment for Stabilization
To find out more visit

While relief continues frantically, Wong Chun Wai of Star wrote about heartless Malaysians who took the opportunity to dump unwanted goods at relief collection centres. He mentioned “trophies, business cards, used stationery and even a set of dentures (!)” among stuff that were ‘donated.’ The paper also received calls from shameless business organizations that asked how much they had to give for their pictures to be published in the main section of the newspaper.

On the other hand, the intuitive response by so many to offer genuine help in cash and kind is gratifying - yet there’s always the niggling thought if all these are reaching the intended. Already there are reports that some ‘helpers’ are helping themselves. This and the fact that politics and religious sentiments are now beginning to surface is not good news. Sanctimonious posturing and finger pointing about motive and size of financial aid, etc show how fractious relief efforts will become in the coming days.

Our church Hope EFC, is directing our cash collection to CREST (Crisis Relief Services & Training Bhd), a non-profit Malaysian Christian crisis relief ministry that has teams on the ground in Bandar Aceh and Sri Lanka. In the past CREST has deployed multiple teams comprising trained volunteers to disaster-stricken areas such as Afghanistan, Iran, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Honduras, India, and Turkey.

To contact CREST, call, fax, or email
Mrs Lana Wong (Executive Director)
mobile: 016-3011721
or Ms Catherine (Administrator)
tel no: 03+7725 7299
fax: 03-7725 7298
or email:


Harry said...

David. If you've not read my blog-post of Dec 28, I invite you to do so. I enjoy hearing from KL.

David BC Tan said...

Thanks Harry. I have visited a few times and I will certainly drop by again.