SINGAPORE, 16 January 2016 – SINGAPOREAN humanitarian non-governmental organisation (NGO) Mercy Relief is currently on the ground of flood-struck Tamil Nadu, India to follow up on ongoing disaster relief efforts and review plans for rehabilitation programmes, which will focus on livelihood recovery of survivors of December’s South India Floods. These programmes will aim to help villagers rebuild their livelihoods, especially those who depend on agriculture and small businesses for income and subsistence, and to help them become more resilient to future disasters.
Following the completion of their first Relief Distribution Operations (RDO) in the slums of Kulathumedu in December 2015, Mercy Relief is taking this time on the ground to conduct assessments of local community recovery needs in worst flood-affected districts such as Cuddalore and Kanchipuram.
Mercy Relief’s Executive Director Zhang Tingjun said, “Our priority is to help the local residents regain normalcy in their lives and to cope with livelihood recovery concerns. The general public has provided tremendous support and we have raised over S$125,000 since we launched our fundraising efforts 6 weeks ago. There is still much more work to be done to help these communities and we hope that the contributions from the public will continue to make rehabilitation work possible.”
Singapore’s Rahmatan Lil Alamin Foundation (RLAF) organised a fundraising campaign in support of Mercy Relief’s relief efforts for the South India Floods, which concluded on 24th December 2015. The fundraising effort saw donation collection boxes placed in 69 mosques island-wide. RLAF presented a total of S$98,216 to Mercy Relief on 15th January 2016. The funds raised will contribute to the ongoing rehabilitation efforts for flood-hit communities in South India.
Poor urban settlements in Chennai continue to face prevailing water and sanitation issues, and houses remain in disrepair. Many families have had their kitchenware and most of their stock of staple food such as rice and beans washed away by the flood waters. Worst-hit areas like Cuddalore, Kanchipuram and Thiruvallur currently face long-term food and income security concerns as many farming lands and livestock have been destroyed by the floods. Some of these affected communities in the rural areas have received only minimal relief aid or governmental support.
According to official sources, more than 50,000 huts in the Cuddalore district and 25,000 houses along Chennai city’s river and canal banks were damaged by the monsoon floods. Due to the prolonged exposure to the flood waters, people living in the slums of Chennai are suffering from skin diseases on their feet and lower legs. A total of approximately 55,175 hectares of agricultural land were inundated in the regions of Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.
The public can continue to contribute to Mercy Relief’s fundraising campaign, which runs through to 31st January 2016.
Donations can be made through the following channels:
1) Credit Card donation via Mercy Relief’s website: www.mercyrelief.org (Join > Donate > “South India Floods Relief 2015”)
2) Cross cheque to Mercy Relief Limited with “South India Floods Relief 2015” written on the back of the cheque, and mailed to Blk 160, Lorong 1 Toa Payoh, #01-1568, S310160
3) Cash donations at Blk 160, Lorong 1 Toa Payoh, #01-1568, S310160
4) Funds transfer to Mercy Relief’s DBS Current Account 054-900741-2
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