I have just spoken with one of my cousins Chanel Iroi. Chanel was trained in New Zealand as a meterologist and is part of the government emergency support team in Honiara. He had this to say to me today:
"we are working around the clock to get relief supplies to camps. Most camps are using schools so its affecting starting of schools as well...the immediate task is to reduce the number in those camps. we are looking at volunteers..especially those whose homes are still ok...the government might look at assisting them. at the moment there are more than 8,000 people in the evacuation centres and looking after them is a great challenge"
Local Solomon Islanders in Dunedin have also started an appeal for practical goods such as clothing, blankets, mosquito nets and bedding. If you would like to donate please contact:
Joy Breward 0273301906
Ivica Gregurec 0223196709
If you have fundraising ideas yourself, we welcome your kiwi ingenuity!
The Solomon Island community in New Zealand is small, but with your help we can change lives.
Join our facebook page for more info! DUNEDIN SI FLOODS HELP
Tagio tumas! Thank you!
Solomon Outreach Society* is a charitable trust that helps Solomon Island communities source practical aid, medical supplies and school equipment, to assist communities towards great education and good health. Past projects have focused on sourcing second-hand items in New Zealand and recycling items such as desks, books, chairs and clothing, and shipping to communities in Solomon Islands to give children and their families practical support. Following the 2014 flood disaster in Honiara, your monetary support will be channelled directly to aid organisations volunteering and supporting our Honiara families.
*New Zealand Charitable Trust No. 2582042
I am a Solomon Island-New Zealander. For all of us Solomon Islanders, watching the news of substantial flooding in our capital Honiara in the last few days has been absolutely heartbreaking. Many of us have still not been able to confirm the whereabouts of our family members, and we are left wondering about the safety of our loved ones. In any country a tragedy such as this pushes resources to the limits, but for us the one town that is the hub of our country has been battered and devastated, and we just do not have the infrastructure or internal support to be able to handle such a disaster.
Fig 1 & 2. Before flood - © Photos courtesy Sally & Peter Hundleby 2012
Fig 3. Old Mataniko Bridge collapses 3/4/14
Fig 4. Flooded Mataniko river 4/4/14
Fig 5. Searching for loved ones 4/4/14
The worries for us are not just finding and grieving the bodies of those who have died (official numbers are now at 21 and rising - many are still missing) but also about enabling those who are alive to be able to survive. These are the problems our families now have to deal with:
Fig 8 & 9. Typical leaf haus in Honiara - © Photos courtesy Sally & Peter Hundleby 2012
It will probably be many weeks before we find out the true extent of damage and how much those in rural areas have suffered. Currently we can only be sure of the devastation in the main town area, because we can see footage and talk with people via phone. In the rural areas, we just will not know until support workers can reach them. The truth is that Solomon Islanders are resilient, and we will help each other to get through this. But we can do with all the help we can get.
Links to NEWS ARTICLES about Guadalcanal Flooding:
Solomon Islanders LOVE music. Bob Marley is probably the most famous and loved musician in Solomon Islands.