Almost one month after the devastating earthquake and tsunami on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, Johanniter is helping in Palu City, West Palu and the Sigi district in central Sulawesi. We are working together with two local partner organisations. The common goal is to ensure the survival and basic needs of a total of 10.000 people.
Together with the organisations INANTA (Yayasan Inovasi Ketahanan Komunitas) and PERUATI, affected families have been receiving emergency aid packages since the beginning of October. In addition to food such as rice, eggs, baby food and sugar, these include kitchen utensils, buckets, mattresses, tarpaulins and hygiene materials. In the area of hygiene, soap is particularly important so that germs and diseases cannot spread. Heavy rainfall in recent days has worsened the situation on the ground, further increasing the risk of disease transmission. INANTA employees educate people about the risks and hygiene measures and provide drinking water for 1.000 households. They ensure that each person has at least 15 litres of clean water per day to cover basic needs.
In addition to providing aid, both organisations are involved in trainings. More than 60.000 people are still considered displaced and many live in emergency shelters. Volunteers and representatives of affected communities are being trained in how to reduce risks and prepare better for disasters. This includes first aid measures, among other things.
The children of affected families should also be able to restart regular schooling as soon as possible. In support of this, 2.000 children will receive notebooks, drawing books, pens, rulers and erasers after most of their school materials were lost in the earthquake and tsunami, and numerous schools collapsed.
Especially for children, it is important to continue a child-friendly life after the recent experiences. The school materials encourages them to restore some normality and stability, and they can be busy", says Claudia Zehl, Johanniter project-coordinator.
Processing the experiences is equally important for those affected and for helpers. PERUATI concentrates on psychosocial support and trains aid worker in dealing with victims who have lost relatives or friends. Depending on their personal circumstances, they act as counsellors or organise self-help groups. Children, women or elderly process last weeks in different ways and traumatic experiences must be integrated into their lives in a healthy way instead of repressing it. This ensures long-term mental health. It is therefore important to provide professional care for people after an initial stabilisation phase, which is currently being managed by PERUATI.
The project activities are financed by donations received from Aktion Deutschland Hilft and run until the end of December. Afterwards, the reconstruction phase begins.