Cyclone Winston was the strongest cyclone to make landfall in the Southern hemisphere with devastating consequences for Fiji and nearby islands. Those who are least prepared are the poorer more isolated communities.
There are 3 phases of an emergency of this kind, the 3 ‘r’s are the ‘rescue phase’, the ‘relief phase’ and the ‘rebuilding phase’, and each phase is critical to the safety and wellbeing of the people albeit with different demands.
The ‘rescue’ (and recovery) phase is the phase during and immediately after the disaster.
The ‘relief’ phase can take months depending on the devastation caused. This phase focuses on food, water, clothing, medical support and temporary shelter for those affected. The response of the churches is critical because they often know their communities best and know how to assess the need and get relief supplies to where they are needed.
The ‘rebuilding’ phase can take years. The ‘rebuilding’ phase is still ongoing after the earthquake that struck Christchurch New Zealand in 2010. Our Projects Officer is currently in Vanuatu assisting with ‘rebuild’ efforts more than a year after Cyclone Pam in the Melanesia region. This is often the most difficult phase, because people often forget that the people still need help to rebuild their homes, their gardens, their communities and their lives long after rescue and relief efforts have been complete.
Anglican Missions is focusing appeal efforts on rebuilding the very poor and remote community of Maniava struck by the full force of cyclone Winston. For Stage 1 we want to rebuild 33 homes at a modest cost of $7,000 each.
Donations can continue to be made to AMB’s Emergency Appeal.
See Mike Hawke’s video of his experiences in Fiji following Cyclone Winston https://youtu.be/QBtiwOII7fc