SINGAPORE, 25 May 2016 – MERCY Relief, Singapore’s home-grown humanitarian non-governmental-organisation (NGO), is working closely with Mahakaruna Buddhist Society in Singapore to deliver essential relief supplies to Sri Lankan communities affected by the massive floods and landslides triggered by Cyclone Roanu’s recent torrential rains.
Mercy Relief will be contributing one tonne of relief supplies including soap, solid cooking fuel, medical supplies, blankets and school bags. These will be sent together with two containers worth of supplies from Mahakaruna Buddhist Society, and will be received and distributed by the Sri Lankan Ministry of Disaster Management.
According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA), priority needs include hygiene supplies, health, shelter and food assistance, and current requests include the provision of clothing, water purification tablets and, hygiene and cooking equipment.
The Sri Lanka National Disaster Management Centre reports that more than 288,000 people across 22 of the country’s 25 districts are affected by flooding and landslides, with Colombo and Gampaha being the worst affected. The current death toll stands at 92, with 109 people missing and more than 185,900 people displaced. Thousands of homes lie in ruins with the number of damaged houses expected to increase. Mercy Relief remains in close contact with ground partners and stands ready to provide further assistance should the need arise.
During the armed conflict in Sri Lanka in 2009, Mercy Relief was the only foreign NGO to gain access into Vavuniya; the area with the highest concentration of internally displaced people (IDP). The Singaporean NGO deployed a five-man team to deliver acute relief aid and alleviate acute water shortage.
Following devastating floods and landslides that struck Sri Lanka in 2010, a three-man team from Mercy Relief worked closely with the nation’s Ministry of Disaster Management on the ground to deploy six units of pedal-powered water filtration systems to communities who lacked clean potable water. Joining forces with Mahakaruna Buddhist Society, the team also assisted with food distribution activities.
About Mercy Relief
Headquartered in Singapore, Mercy Relief was established in 2003 to respond to human tragedies and disasters in Asia Pacific. Today, we are Singapore’s leading independent disaster relief agency with dedicated leadership, capacity building expertise and an affiliate network operating across the entire disaster management cycle. Mercy Relief provides emergency aid within 72 hours of an appeal in the aftermath of a disaster.
Our longer-term sustainable development projects aim to uplift and empower communities in five key areas: water and sanitation, shelter, sustainable livelihoods, healthcare and education. For the past decade, Mercy Relief has responded to more than 56 human tragedies with more than $32.5 million in relief across 24 countries. We have implemented more than 50 sustainable development initiatives and impacted an aggregate of over 2 million lives.