Tens of Thousands Now Homeless as a Result of Severe Flooding

by Wolfgang Groß,  2007/05/09

Mohamed (right in photo) lost his house to the flood.

humedica has started a relief operation for the victims of the natural disaster. Severe rainstorms led to severe flooding, which in turn, caused tens of thousands people in Sri Lanka to lose their homes.

At least 17 people have officially died from the flooding. The severe monsoon rains, combined with at-times hurricane-force winds totally destroyed 280 homes and damaged 1,266 buildings, including the roof of the parliament building.

In the capital Colombo, as well as in Gampaha, Galle and Kalutara, more than 121,000 people have had to evacuate, and are now living in 16 emergency shelters. “My house and all my belongings are now underwater,” laments Fathima BeeBee (34) from Maligawatte, who together with 300 others has found refuge in the R. Premadasa International Cricket Stadium. “No one is helping us,” adds Fathima Kani from Keththarama. “We have to buy our own food. I have two girls, and we have to camp out here in the open. There is no privacy. We have been simply left alone!” complains the 49-year-old mother.

These flood victims have found refuge in the R. Premadas International Cricket Stadium in Keththarama.

Based on this cry for help, the humedica board of directors decided to offer 10,000 Euros as initial emergency aid for the purchasing of food, blankets, tarps and cookware, to help ease the suffering. In addition, a medical team from humedica Sri Lanka will provide free consultations in the flooded region. “There is no peace of mind in our country, and I would like to thank the German donors from the bottom of my heart that we, in accord with our motto “charity in action”, can quickly and unbureaucratically offer up help for those in need ,” stated humedica Sri Lanka Executive Director, Sam Rajasuriar. “We will immediately start to register those needing assistance with the ‘National Disaster Management Centre’, so that the assistance can be quickly passed on to the disaster victims.”

humedica e.V. has been working in Sri Lanka since 1983 and has been registered as an NGO under the name Humedica International Lanka since 1994. Alongside an international school for 600 children, humedica in Sri Lanka supports different social and medical institutions, including seven pre-schools, mobile and stationary medical and dental clinics as well as an ambulance ship.

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