Trócaire 50th Anniversary ConferenceLearn More
Over 1,400 people have been killed by a devastating tsunami in Indonesia.
Trócaire is supporting relief efforts to help bring food, water and medicine to people who have been left with nothing. We are supporting our sister agency, Karina-Caritas Indonesia, who are working in the worst affected areas.
The death toll is expected to grow significantly after the island of Central Sulawesi Province was hit by a 7.5 magnitude earthquake that led to a tsunami last weekend.
Waves of up to 20 feet hit the city of Palu, which is home to more than 300,000 people, while many of the worst affected areas have yet to receive full support due to serious transport and communications issues.
People are facing severe shortages of clean drinking water, food and medical assistance. The disaster zone has a population of 1.4 million people, with around 70,000 already gathered in crowded evacuation sites.
Hospitals in Palu are full and it’s likely survivors will have to be taken to hospitals in Makassar, 500 kilometres away. In Palu, the government has been focusing on search, rescue and removal of dead bodies as an already contaminated water supply has increased the risk of the spread of disease.
Trócaire has committed to provide €30,000 to Karina-Caritas Indonesia to support the immediate response to ensure that the basic needs of the most vulnerable are met. We are ready to provide additional support over the coming weeks.
“People are in urgent need of food, clean water, shelter and medical support,” said Noreen Gumbo, Trócaire Head of Humanitarian Programmes. “Unfortunately, it looks highly likely that the number of deaths will continue to rise further as the terrible impact of the devastation is realised. Our partners are working hard to provide support in areas that have been most difficult to reach.”
While most international-aid efforts have so far focused on the city of Palu, severe logistical challenges have meant that many of the worst affected areas have not yet received extensive support as communities have been cut off by landslides, road blockages, collapsed bridges and major communication issues.
Yohanes Baskoro, programme manager with Karina-Caritas Indonesia said: “We’re strengthening our team in Makassar to respond to this and we’re also sending a team in from Jakarta. It will take a long time to recover from this disaster.
“There are still so many places that haven’t yet been reached. The practical challenges to helping survivors are great.”
Transportation remains a real challenge, while there is a shortage of electricity and gasoline in many areas which has led to further difficulties in reaching cut-off communities.