On Friday 13th March 2015, Super Cyclone Pam hit the small island nation of Vanuatu destroying many villages across a number of islands, leaving the infrastructure and the people devastated and without homes.
With roofs gone, no drinking water, no power, no food, roads blocked and/or completely demolished, bridges down and fallen trees everywhere, people need assistance to get back to their daily life where children go to school, parents go to work and there is a dry place for them all to eat and sleep.
The challenge for the Ni Vanuatu citizens is that they don’t have the money to rebuild their nation. Insurance? Forget it. Apart from being provided temporary subsistence aid from international Aid agencies, they are virtually being forced to fend for themselves.
After the cyclone, I flew to Vanuatu as did Robin Culph (a fellow Australian-expat with the same passion and love for the Vanuatu people) and in conjunction with Stephanie Neilson (originally from New Zealand who has called Vanuatu home for over a decade), we have joined forces to see what we can do to help this ravaged country recover.
Whilst the major Aid agencies such as Red Cross are doing a great job in providing short term relief in the form of food, clean water and temporary housing, we found that little was being done to take the all-important next step of rebuilding the infrastructure that the locals so desperately need to help them rebuild their lives.
To date some of the more important infrastructure projects that we have decided to get involved in are:
• Rebuilding the local Mele Maat village kindergarten, so the kids can get back on track with their daily routines. Government funding for rebuilding this kinder is not available and it schools up to 30 children a day. Estimated cost AUD$4,000.
• Distributing tarpaulins and mosquito nets and assisting with building materials necessary to rebuild damage structures in Mele and Mele Maat villages. Estimated cost AUD$7,000.
PLEASE DONATE TO HELP THE PEOPLE OF VANUATU REBUILD
Please donate money now to help us rebuild this vital infrastructure of Vanuatu.
Every bit helps –even a donation of $25 will make a difference – your daily coffee money for a week!
And you can have the peace of mind that the admin fee charged by ‘Go Fund Me” (the site processing your donation) is only 5%.
This means, 95% of your donation will do directly to helping the citizens of Vanuatu rebuild.
So please open your hearts to the people of Vanuatu and donate now.
Thank you so much for your support
Helen Collier-Kogtevs, Robin Culph and Stephanie Neilson
P.s. Have you booked your next holiday?
It would be great if you travel to Vanuatu for your next holiday as tourism is their major industry that employs so many Ni Vanuatu people. This will help this small economy recover sooner from the devastating effects of cyclone Pam.