Mudslides were caused by a combination of factors, including steep topography, unusually heavy rains during April, and an earthquake of 5.3 magnitude that struck in early April. On April 23, 2002, the Morobe Provincial Disaster Response Committee asked ADRA Papua New Guinea to assist in the response to the emergency. More that 43 landslides have occurred, and blocked roads impede access to the area.
In addition to providing tarpaulins for temporary shelter, ADRA is constructing a water supply system and latrines at a community center established by the Provincial Disaster Administration. ADRA Australia, ADRA Papua New Guinea and the Morobe Provincial Administration have allocated funds for this response.
In addition to providing emergency relief following natural disasters, ADRA Papua New Guinea has implemented a number of development projects. They include building irrigation and other water systems, HIV/AIDS education, adult literacy programs, clothing distribution, and agricultural projects.
Papua New Guinea occupies the eastern half of New Guinea, the world's second largest island. PNG also includes several South Pacific islands, with a combined land mass that is slightly smaller than Spain. Nearly five million people live in Papua New Guinea. Since 1998, severe drought followed by forest fires, floods, and poor harvests have affected people living in rural areas of PNG.
Norma J Sahlin, Media Relations Manager
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