Viet Nam

More flooding in Vietnam, ADRA provides relief

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DA NANG, VIETNAM-Following the second series of floods that struck central Vietnam last week, the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) today began distributing the first of two phases of relief supplies to those affected.
"In mid-November when ADRA Vietnam visited a flood damaged village above Hue, a group of school children said they were afraid the river would rise again," says Wendy Erd, ADRA Vietnam public officer. "It was almost impossible to imagine, and yet on December 2, the floods came again." Quang Nam and Quang Ngai provinces received the most serious damage.

Today, ADRA Vietnam staff and volunteers are beginning the distribution of its first phase of relief supplies to 3,500 families in Thua Thien Hue. The items include 35 tons (31.5 metric tons) of rice, 3,500 mosquito nets, and 3,500 blankets.

The second phase will take place in January, when ADRA Vietnam will distribute another 115 tons (103.5 metric tons) of rice or rice seedlings. "This will help to forestall the mountain of hunger and need that will build as winter's cold, wet weather sets in," explains Erd. Partial funding for the relief items was provided by the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), approximately US$71,550.

"Due to the few resources people were left with after the first disaster, in some cases a few packages of instant noodles, the effects of this second flood seem especially cruel," adds Erd. "Not anticipating another flood many people immediately planted new rice seedlings they'd been loaned to harvest a spring crop only to have this effort destroyed."

Temporary shelters, roads and rail links were swept away, according to Erd. Reportedly 115 people were killed, and 12 are missing. Hunger is growing exponentially. Submerged for days, factories and businesses are incapacitated, people have lost jobs, personal possessions, and their homes. "In Thua Thien Hue the government estimates 158,822 flood victims will require ongoing food rations after a month, and 92,444 will need support even af ter three months," she says.

In mid-November, ADRA distributed 10 tons (9 metric tons) of rice to affected families in the Hoa Phu Commune, and provided two, 22-pound (10-kilogram) bags of rice to 500 families (as many as 20,000 people) in the Hoa Vang District, Da Nang Province.

ADRA is an independent, humanitarian agency established with the specific purpose of individual and community development and disaster relief in more than 120 countries worldwide. ADRA's International office, located in Silver Spring, Maryland, is accepting monetary donations for its relief efforts in Vietnam. To make a donation, please call ADRA's toll-free number 1-800-424-ADRA (2372). To make an online donation or to find out more about ADRA, visit the web site at www.adra.org.