The 7-member medical relief team jointly deployed by Mercy Relief and SingHealth institutions returned on Saturday, 17 Oct from Padang, having completed their eight-day tour of duty there, addressing the nedical needs of the quake victims.

Static clinic at MR's base camp

Static clinic at MR’s base camp

The team that consisted of doctors, nurses, paramedics and a logistician operated from a field clinic at Mercy Relief’s base camp in the outlying area of Sikucur, Pariaman Padang, and conducted mobile clinics to attend to the injured and sick at the remote areas. The team saw over 800 adult and paediatric cases in all, ages ranging from 8 months to 80 years. The cases included wounds, upper respiratory tract infections, fever, cough, diarrhea, severe asthmatic and skin problems. Several minor surgical procedures were also required.

Mobile clinic operations

Mobile clinic operations

The mobile clinics were warmly appreciated by the local communities, many of whol were not able to receive medical attention for days since the earthquake struck, due to inaccessibility caused by landslides.

Hady Mirza doing his part as MR's Goodwill Ambassador

Hady Mirza doing his part as MR’s Goodwill Ambassador

Asian Idol and Mercy Relief’s Goodwill Ambassador for Indonesia, Hady Mirza joined the team in Pariaman Padang to participate in the distribution of food and other household essentials by Mercy Relief. The S$200,000 worth of relief supplies were procured with the donation from French hypermarket giant, Carrefour, through Carrefour International Foundation. The Foundation has since doubled its donation to Mercy Relief.

The Lionhearters volunteer logisticians

The Lionhearters volunteer logisticians

On Thursday 15 Oct, Singapore’s ambassador to Indonesia, Ashok Kumar visited Mercy Relief’s base camp and also witnessed the handing-over of one of the 5 giant systems tents to 3 local schools to be used as temporary classrooms.

The Ambassador visiting the temporary school that MR set up

The Ambassador visiting the temporary school that MR set up

Ground observation report: “The situation has stabilised and we now need to address the other essential areas such as education and shelter. 80% of the 115 schools in Padang Pariaman have been decimated by the quake. Schools act as platforms for children to learn and play with their friends, which incidentally help to scrape the trauma off them. It contributes to the psychological rehabilitation of the affected children.” – from Mercy Relief’s Chief Executive Hassan Ahmad who was in Padang within 48 hours of the quake.

Prior to sending the medical team, MR’s preliminary arrived at the disaster location on 2 Oct 2009. The 4-member preliminary team had set up and operated an evacuation service to transport the seriously injured victims from the remote areas to the Pariaman Hospital in town. The team also distributed packed hot meals for lunch and bottled drinking water to 150 patients and their families at the M Djamil Hospital in Padang for a week. Adding to that, the team distributed 500 units of tarpaulins for shelter, 1000 packs of baby food and 1000 packs of UHT milk.

Moving ahead into the rehabilitation phase, Mercy Relief will be concentrating its efforts towards the rebuilding of education infrastructures and will continue to provide necessary basic supplies (eg. food, water and shelter) where needed.

Temporary classrooms under a tent

Temporary classrooms under a tent

The MR team will be back in Padang by end October to continue with the relief efforts.

About Mercy Relief

Mercy Relief is a Singaporean humanitarian organisation which engages in both disaster relief and sustainable development programmes. It was established in 2003 as an independent non-governmental humanitarian charity responding to the human tragedies in Asia. Mercy Relief’s aid programme focuses on providing timely and effective assistance to disaster-stricken communities and has maintained the delivery of emergency aid within 72 hours from the point of appeal for assistance.  

In the past 12 years, Mercy Relief has disbursed over S$32 million in aid across 40 disaster relief and 53 sustainable development initiatives. Mercy Relief has impacted an aggregate of 2 million lives in 24 countries and areas, namely Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, DPR Korea, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Japan, Laos, Lebanon, Malaysia, the Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal,  Pakistan, Palestine, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam and Yemen.

For more information, you may call us at 6514 6322 or email corporateaffairs@mercyrelief.org