While we were living in our little bamboo village on Erromango in Vanuatu, I don’t know how many conversations we had with our friends and family there about the environment. While the rest of the world is still debating whether climate change is real or not, places like Vanuatu can only try to learn to cope with the effects it sees from climate change on a regular basis. Things like rising sea-levels, rising temperature of air and ocean (affecting gardens and sea-life), and an increase of extreme events, such as Cyclone Pam, are an inarguable reality for them.
But that doesn’t mean they have the funds or materials to build adequate precautionary infrastructure, such as we would have in the western world, to face these catastrophic circumstances. Today I am writing regarding Cyclone Pam, one of the most monstrous cyclones in the history of the Pacific.
Pam tore through Vanuatu and is still on the move. Images are now pouring in from the capital of Port Vila, a city made mostly of concrete, showing heart-stopping destruction. Meanwhile, I’m wondering when we’ll begin to hear from the outer islands like Erromango, where we lived and served for two years. They have some concrete buildings, but the majority of structures are built from bamboo and leaves.
Please share the links to the organizations that are providing immediate relief to bamboo villages like ours. If you have the means, choose your favorite organization below and make a donation. They will need all the help they can get*.
- UNICEF’s Cyclone Pam relief fund: UNICEF works to ensure that communities have the knowledge and resources necessary to provide for the needs of their children.
- CARE Australia’s Cyclone Pam relief fund: CARE works in communities across Vanuatu, preparing the people to face disasters such as this, and gives them the skills they need to respond and rebuild.
- OXFAM’s Cyclone Pam relief fund: OXFAM works to help governemts, businesses, and communities be as prepared and strong as possible. They assist organizations in working together to build a stronger future.
- RED CROSS’s Cyclone Pam relief fund: The Red Cross focuses on first aid training as well as responding to crises, helping under-resourced communities across Vanuatu.
Thank you so much for your time and generosity. My Vanuatu family thanks you.
*Please note, these websites will convert your donation to Australian dollars. You can use google to see exactly how much you are donating in your own currency.