And, working alongside local Rotarians and others, we will be there for the long haul, helping rebuild communities … and lives
Disaster Aid International (Australia) has deployed DARTs (Disaster Aid Response Team members) Dianne Holland (Australia) and Wayne Beaumier(USA) to Vanuatu. They arrived on Thursday 26 March. Their initial assessment – working within the communities, and with other aid organisations – confirmed the priority was for clean, safe water. That is confirmed in reports by the UN agency OCHA: "110,000 need clean safe drinking water".
So, we have already distributed (to two communities) a number of Sawyer filters (provided by Wayne), each sufficient to keep a large family supplied with clean water for the immediate term. The DARTs are now investigating the most effective places to locate SkyHydrant™ units that will provide clean water for many years. We are also starting with >100 Home Repair Kits and tarpaulins – all sourced locally – with more to follow when they become available.
Alongside us, local Rotary clubs and an NGO are playing a vital role
Dianne and Wayne have been working closely with members of the two Rotary Clubs, Port Vila and Vanuatu Grass Roots and also delivering our aid with ProMedical, an arm of local NGO, the Vanuatu Emergency Medical Services Association (VEMSA) committee
We meet a former Vanuatu PM
Dianne and Wayne met former PM Barak Sope (an MP for 25 years and now a respected community elder) after delivering aid and assistance where most needed. His local knowledge and contacts have been most helpful to them.
Diane and Wayne will return home in April and be replaced by two more of our DARTs to continue this vital work.
AN IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT DONATIONS TO DISASTER AID AUSTRALIA
Donations that will provide aid following the devastation caused by Cyclone Pam will be transferred to ProMedical, overseen by the Rotary Club of Port Vila, and disbursed only with the approval of Disaster Aid International.