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Cyclone Pam Village Tanna Island

  • First real homes!     17 June 2015
    Posted by: Lisa Pearse

    As a third food parcel was received recently, we asked George what he thought would be best to do with our funds, who said shelter is priority for the women and children.

    Although treated timber is expensive along with roofing iron given the freight required to get to the island, we have worked out we can afford to build 3 'sleeping houses' for three families in much need. Yarwel with 4 children, Batari with 7 children, along with Naomi who is an elderly lady in a very poor village with 2 grand daughters living with her.

    These ladies are thrilled to hear the news given they have lived their lives in local grass huts with dirt floors, so these will be their first real homes. Adam is heading over to Vanuatu to construct them in July. The plan is for 3 A-frame style houses, a new style for most, but a strong style which will provide for a mezzanine floor with extra sleeping space, although to stretch funds there will be some local materials used like bamboo. It also is similar to their custom cyclone houses, and the airport building on the island which is also A-frame and built for cyclones.

    Our grateful thanks again for your support, which will be such a blessing for these families.

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  • More damage but in good spirits     26 May 2015
    Posted by: Lisa Pearse

    The village received a second national food parcel a few weeks ago, although smaller than the first. They tell us they are still OK for food at the moment, as they continue to wait for gardens to fully grow. But this will take longer now as in early May they had another 3 day rain storm which caused further damage, so all the new vegetable plants were damaged, and the corn they planted was also damaged by the big rain. So hard!

    This past 2 weeks two ladies from UNICEF stayed in the village to carry out a survey for the local school and community for water, sanitation and hygiene needs. The village asked if there would be further food support but these staff had no news.

    Nevertheless the village knows they can contact us if more food is needed and seem to be in good spirits despite the hardships.

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  • Sunhats     27 April 2015
    Posted by: Lisa Pearse
    Main image

    The village are still using their first national food aid supply at the moment, but as they don't know if they will get a second turn, we are keeping your donations in reserve for food if required. Once food supplies are assured, or restored from gardens, your donations will be used to assist in the rebuild, but this could take some months.

    There has been lots of wind and dust over the past couple of weeks, as without trees there is no shelter from wind and sun. So we love this picture of Naomi who has been very innovative in the situation, weaving a sun hat.

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  • TC Solo     15 April 2015
    Posted by: Lisa Pearse
    Main image

    All OK after TC Solo which was good to hear. But it brought some more wind damage to the island and village, with a couple of their rough recycled huts losing their roofs. While they were very relieved it wasn't another Pam, it was another set back for some of them. Keep them in your prayers.

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  • Good news & more bad weather     13 April 2015
    Posted by: Lisa Pearse
    Main image

    Friday, 34 days after Cyclone Pam, the village got national food aid for the first time! George's family of 6, got 35kg rice, 6 tins of fish, 12 packets of biscuits & 12 packets of noodles. All others in their village received the same sort of rationing. No idea when the next aid will come, but they reckon this will last them 2 weeks, for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

    Another Cyclone named Solo threatened the island this weekend, although mainly impacting New Cadelonia Tanna had strong winds and rain again. We haven't heard from them since Saturday, so hoping they are OK.

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  • News 9 April      10 April 2015
    Posted by: Lisa Pearse

    Adam has returned to NZ from Tanna Island and we have uploaded some photos to show what the village looks like now. As of today the village has still not received any national aid support, so they are relying on the rice we have provided. The villagers have been very busy planting corn and island cabbage in their ruined gardens which grows the quickest - but it will still be another 3 months before they can harvest a crop. They have also replanted traditional crops, but it will be another year before these will be able to be harvested. They have also been busy rebuilding their homes with materials they have salvaged from the storm - you will see their efforts in the photos we have uploaded. But in many cases they are temporary efforts at best, and better materials are required to keep their families safe and dry in the long term. They have also lost most of their coffee plants, which will take another 4 years to regrow to the point of harvest, which means many have also lost their only means of income to save for these things.

    So many thanks again for all the support, which is such a blessing for them at this time.

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  • Special advice for our international donors     4 April 2015
    Posted by: Lisa Pearse

    One kind donor in Ireland alerted us to the fact that Givealittle has blocked certain credit cards internationally due to raising security concerns. So if your would like to make a donation and find you are unable to do so, then please email helpdesk@givealittle.co.nz for assistance.

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  • Waiting     30 March 2015
    Posted by: Lisa Pearse

    16 days after Cyclone Pam and our village still awaits national aid support. They have heard the Provincial Disaster Commitee (PDC) have delivered aid to North and South Tanna, then they will do west, middle and east so they are hoping it will arrive soon. Bananas have run low, so we have been able to buy them them much needed rice. Thank you so much for your support!

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