Tents bring Indonesia quake survivors out of the rain
- News and Stories
UNHCR delivery gives shelter to some 10,000 children, women and men who lost homes when a devastating earthquake and tsunami struck Sulawesi last month.
By UNHCR staff | 29 October 2018
UNHCR staff meet with Bampek and his family, who survived the earthquake in Sulawesi. Â© UNHCR/Steffen Limboki
DONGGALA, Indonesia â" The day after a devastating earthquake flattened their home, Bampek and his family built a makeshift tent on empty land with old plastic sheeting.
âSometimes, when it rained hard, the water would come from every direction,â he says, although now the familyâs desperate plight has improved.
The 45-year-old, his w ife Vemy and their eight children are among hundreds of families who lost homes when earthquake and tsunami struck Sulawesi on 28 September, who are now safe and dry.
In the past week, UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, delivered 2,054 emergency tents for the worst affected, with national and local Indonesian partners setting them up ready for those most affected to move in. Further aid, including additional tents, sleeping mats, mosquito nets and solar lamps, is on its way.
âIâm glad that the tent now is fully covered."
âIâm glad that the tent now is fully covered,â says Vemy, 41, visibly relieved as she inspects their new shelter. âThe separators inside the tent also allow me and the girls to change our clothes privately.â
The tents will provide shelter to around 10,000 people in greatest need. They have been distributed by the authorities and UNHCRâs partners, the Indonesian Red Cross, Yaysan Kemandiria n Muslim Indonesia and Wahana Visi.
Among the recipients is Titin, 34, who was left homeless after the quake flattened her house. âI canât live there anymore,â she says, sadly. âBut I thank UNHCR for the tents that you are providing. I donât know where Iâd live now if it werenât here in your tent.â
UNHCR airlifts emergency tents for Indonesia earthquake victims (Mitra Salima Suryono, producer / Dennis Angga Hermawan, Agustian Tri Yuanto, videographers / Marion Viguier, editor)
According to the Indonesia National Agency for Disaster Management, the quake and subsequent tsunami damaged around 68,000 houses, displacing 200,000 and killing some 2,000.
UNHCR staff described the effects of the earthquake and tsunami as âbeyond imaginationâ and âdevastating.â
Coastal communities were destroyed by a tsun ami, while inland villages were struck by liquefaction as black mud rose up to five meters and swallowed buildings.
UNHCR is working hard to support partners and the Indonesian government to meet the growing humanitarian needs. As of today, some 2,000 of UNHCRâs emergency family tents and 12,400 plastic sheeting have been airlifted to Central Sulawesi since last week.