WFFP Proposal for Tsunami Relief
Face the Challenges of Tsunami Disaster: Rebuild the Life & Livelihoods of the People !
LET US BUILD UP OUR NATION AMIDST THE CRISIS !!!"
World Forum of Fisher Peoples, Sri Lankan Branch (NAFSO)
The World Forum of Fisher Peoples (WFFP) works to protect livelihoods, uphold fishing rights, human rights, and social justice to preserve and promote the fisher peoples' culture.
Right after the tsunami hit, NAFSO members of the WFFP's Sri Lankan branch had an urgent meeting amongst their fisher people and volunteers. They sent 5 relief teams to the areas where they work and were hardest hit.
To make a donation, please wire money to the bank listed below:
Name of Bank: Commercial Bank of Ceylon Limited
Swift Number: CCEYLKLX
E-Mail: [email protected]
Bank Branch: Negombo Branch
Branch Address: No:24 & 26,Fernando Avenue,Negombo,Sri Lanka
Account Name: National Fisheries Solidarity
Account Number: 1140499701
What Happened on the 26 December with Tsunami in Sri Lanka?
It is very well known fact that how much people affected by the Tsunami disaster which erupted on 26 December. The South & South east Asian region in the Indian ocean was very badly affected and very serious damage was reported in India,[Including Andaman & Nicobar Islands], Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia and Bangladesh. How ever it was reported in the media that Somalia and Kenya was also affected which are in East African region of the Indian Ocean. The media reported the strength of earth Quake which was the cause of the tsunami tidal waves was 30,000 times higher than the Nuclear bomb which destroyed Hiroshima during the second world war.
All these are very well known facts & figures we should not go to the details of the tragedy. The coastal communities at North, South, East and west coasts very badly damaged by the tsunami tidal waves. Although North /west coast was also experienced gale, it was not experienced severe damage of deaths and destruction as other parts of the country. However as a mass based fisher people's organization we, as NAFSO is having very hard time as many number of our members along the coast either directly washed away to the sea, or family members lost the lives, activists and their families lost their lives, or badly damaged their properties, all the fishing gear and equipment were either destroyed fully or partially, their children had very bad experience and still prevailing the shock they had at that time.
According to the government media reports the amount of the destruction is as follows;
Number of dead : 29,729
Number of missing people : 5240
Number of casualties: 16,500 (this should be three times of the government estimates)
Number of displaced people : 800,000
Number of districts directly affected :15
Number of schools destroyed : 37 schools in 13 districts.
What did we do so far with our people ?
We, as NAFSO intervened for relief work and all the other necessary matters for the victims from the first moment of the disaster. Although we were very badly affected our member organizations had the courage and determination to face the challenges and assist the fishing communities for restore their lives.
From the day we experienced the tragedy, our member organizations at Galle (Southern Fisheries Organization], Matara[Southern Fisheries Organization), Kalutara District Fisheries Solidarity (Kalutara), District Fisheries Solidarity-DIFSO (Ampara & Baticoloa), Sri Vimukthi Fisher women Organization & Center for Consientization (Negombo), and Puttlam District Fisheries Solidarity (Puttlam) were very actively involved to do their best of the ability and capacity to assist the people. From burying the dead bodies to resettle the victims at the camps, providing food, water and basic facilities - medicine, clothes, mats for sleep, cleaning the wells, clearing the area to resettle the people, collecting the information for assess the damage, helping children to over come the traumatic situation, etc etc. are some of the main activities we conducted so far.
To convey our solidarity and deep concern over the victimized people and to convey that we are with them in a disaster like this, NAFSO sent 5 teams to various parts of the country as an immediate action. Those teams went to Ampara and Batiloloa areas at east coast, Trincomalee at east coast again, Galle, Matara and Kalutara at Southern coast and West coast, Negombo at the west coast, Puttlam, Thoduwawa and Kalpitiya at North/West coastal areas.
We sent another team to Jaffna after 5 days of the tragedy to meet people and convey our deep solidarity and concern over the people there. Our partner organizations of Rural Workers Organization and Center for Women Development carried out considerable assistance there for the victims with their capacity amidst deep difficulties.
We bought some relief assistance to distribute among the victims which consist of dry rations, water, medicine and some basic needs like mats, pillows at the beginning. This was not adequate when we consider the enormous amount of requirement and the scarcity of the goods in the affected areas.
We organized some relief assistance from PIADS team at Karuwalagaswewa and Praja Shakrthi Development Forum to send Matara area as we had to conduct a camp at SFO-office at Matara. There are 30 displaced people kept there and provide basic needs of them. And another camp has been set up at Bussa ,Galle for a number of 60 people.
So everything was very much complex. Our activists were also lost their capacity at a certain level as the demand could not cope up even coming from the members of the organization. So there was demand to appeal support from out side.
NAFSO sent some assistance as teams of people and also dry rations from the inland areas. This is the privilege we have as we have inland fishing communities in our network. We sent 15 people team to Matara to assist them and 5 member team to Galle for assist their work.
On the other hand the government involved with immediate effect though the inefficiency and the deep concern over the victims were not there. One main problem we all experienced was that we are not experienced a tragedy like this earlier and we do not have any disaster management system or plan as a nation. So our people were instructed to attend the district Relief Coordination Committee meetings and raised the issues of the people in the camps. In Negombo, Kalutara, Galle and Matara this is already happening and Ampara, Trincomale and Jaffna should be involved in the future. At the same time the Alliance for National Resources and Human Rights (ANRHR) was conducted some coordination work, and NAFSO attended those work and collaborated to the work for the relief work and the other assistance needed for our people.
What can we do as a fisher people's organization?
The situation was so tense and also it is one of the worst experience we had our life time we all are shocked at the moment. Every one wants to do something and no coordination and communication each other. We do what ever we can do and assist the people. But as NAFSO we have a big role to play and we wanted to sit together and plan together how we face the challenge and how to over come the deep shock of the natural disaster. After all the[except Jaffna] visits we convened a meeting last Friday. 31, December and discussed how we could work as a National Organization in an efficient and effective manner and not as isolated units .Number of decisions were taken collectively. Organizations representing East. west, South and North west including inland fishing areas were represented at the meeting. The NAFSO team decided to attend the work on various levels of immediate, mid term, and long term and intermediary livelihood building and resettlement activities.
Some difficulties we foresee with the resettling of the people !
We face some difficulty of the finding land for resettlement at the moment as government says they do not want to allocate any land for construction in the coast after this. President Chandrika Bandaranaike when she address the nation very clearly mentioned that her government will not allow any construction activities along the coast. The same repeated by the Minister of Fisheries and the Director of the Coast Conservation Department of the ministry of fisheries. So, there will be a very big land issue along the coast very soon. Even at presently, in Negombo, Galle and Matara areas we face very big land issue. Around 10,000 fisher families are struggling for land in Negombo alone.
So we have to be very cautious with all these when we involve the resettling and rehabilitation activities.
What have we identified so far ? How we want to intervene to assist our people?
We identified some urgent needs of the people are not satisfactorily provided. The main problem is the relief assistance do not reach the people who are really needed them. The relief reached to the people who are not directly hit. The out side people who visit those areas with good heart and mind are returned with lost of confidence and hate to the victims while the robbers are attending grab the relief assistance in Southern coast. SO eventually the victims became more vulnerable. There is a necessity to identify the genuinely affected people as well as their destruction. So we decided to implement fact finding work and assessment. We want to do it with urgent attention with volunteers assistance.
Assistance To be provided : To Where & What
Though the extent of the damage is huge we have presently identified 5 main districts to provide assistance these are Matara, Galle, Kalutara , Ampara & Jaffna. We have divided assistance into 3 categories Immediate, Mid term & Long term.
Immediate and ongoing actions we implement
1. Provide relief assistance for most needy people
Dry rations etc. 5 * Rs. 50,000 =Rs. 250,000
2. Affiliate with the District Coordination Bodies of the government agents
3. Fact finding
* Loss of properties- Houses, Equipments related to livelihood
* Mental conditions of the people as we need to conduct some counseling work
* Conditions of camps and assistance to provide information to the district coordination committees coordinated by the Government officials and civil society
* Damages to the fishing gear and other equipments
A fact finding sheet was prepared and circulated among the partners already for data collection.
4. Community Education Activities :
* Primary Health Habits
* Government Procedures on relief assistance
* Special Education on Women's Issues
Meeting Expenses 5 @ Rs.60,000 = Rs.300,000
5. Orient and assist people to submit police entries as they need for claim compensation officially
6. Assist people to get the death certificates
7. Erecting of temporary Shelters
Roof sheets/ Stands etc.. 15 shelters @ Rs. 12000 = Rs.180,000
8. Provide some equipments for those people who are ready to resettle in their original houses which are damaged half or no damage. Need kitchen equipments for those people with immediate attention.
Kitchen Utensils etc. 500 units @ Rs. 5000 =Rs.2,500,000
9. We have requested from our Inland fishing areas to (provide free labour) Shramadana by forming teams and send to the affected areas.
* Puttlam 10 Members team- For send to Galle
* Kurunegala 20 members team-For send to Matara
* Deniyaya 10 members team- Send to Ampara
* Matara 50 members team- to work at Matara
* Galle 40 members team-to work at Galle
* Ampara 40 members team.-to work at Ampara
From this week those work will be carried out. They need basic equipments for cleaning the areas, cleaning the drinking water wells, clear the toilets pits which covered with water, building of houses and repair the boats which are partially destroyed.
10. Collect the dry rations provided by the NAFSO related organizations for store and distribute when the relief flow will be dried up.
Mid term assistance we want to Provide
a. Initiate Counseling centers at the camps:
Counseling centre 5 @ Rs.25 ,000 = Rs. 125,000
b. Provide basic education needs for the affected children:
Books, Uniforms etc. 1000 @ Rs.2500 = Rs.2,500,000
c. Provide medical assistance through organizing clinics and providing medicines to the camps:
Medicine/Doctors/ Transport 5 @ Rs.50,000 =Rs. 250,000
d. Arrange boat repairing centers for those who want to restart the livelihood with immediate effect:
Materials/Technical assistance 5 @ Rs.500,000 = Rs. 2,500,000
e. Provide housing materials for damaged houses to resettle the people:
Materials/ Technical Assistance 500 @ Rs.2500 = Rs.1, 250,000
f. Train youth for boat building and repairing work as a part of rehabilitating the fishing industry:
Trainings 5 @ Rs. 50,000 = Rs.250,000
g. Train women and provide assistance for earn as a part of income of the family:
Trainings 5 @ Rs. 100,000 = Rs.500,000
h. Provide boats, engines and nets which are very much needed among the NAFSO members:
15hp Engine/ Small boat / Nets 500 @ 500,000 = Rs. 250,000,000
i. Provide assistance for resettle:
Long term activities identified
a. Provide livelihood assistance
* Boat building activities and repairing work
- Galle and Negombo already identified places, people and have the trained labour
- Negombo, Center for concientization has a boat yard and they are committed to provide those facilities at the boat yard with the trained labour
- Galle there is a place and trained labour. From this week onwards they will initiate boat repairing activities at the SFO-Office
- Ampara the DISFO team will identify the necessary people and available resources within
- And also we decided to get the assistance from the experienced people in the inland fishing areas[Polonnaruwa and Kurunegala areas] for the boat repairing activities
Materials / Technical assistance 1,000 @ Rs. 150,000 = Rs. 150,000,000
b. Building houses :
At the planning meeting, it was raised the necessity of resettle the displaced people. So we want to engage build 2500 houses within the communities. It was decided that we need to provide 5 million cement hollow blocks and 25000 roofing sheets for the resettlement scheme.
Cement Blocks 5,000,000 @ Rs.20 = Rs.100,000,000
Roofing Sheets 25000 @ Rs.1000 = Rs. 25,000,000
c. Re-establish the destroyed environment :
We want to engage in the re-establishment of coastal environment as it affected very badly. We want to plan out those activities immediately after the immediate relief work.
NAFSO has formed volunteer teams to intervene the activities at the field. This is reported in the above of this report. Some of the teams are from the same affected areas and some are from out side.
The district organization leader and one member from the secretariat appointed as the coordinators of the district activities. The secretariat member will keep close contact with the NAFSO secretariat and act as the mediator for all the operations in the field.
The district organization activists appointed as responsible persons for various specific activities.
The members among the victims of NAFSO who are having the courage amidst the crisis are also work with the district teams while mediating their family matters.
NAFSO mobile unit was formed and they are moving around the districts and involving speedy assistance for the district organizations. A media person, religious leader and a
NAFSO activist attend this task around the country.
Convener and Administrative secretary of NAFSO play over all coordination and mediating role for the operations in the field. They provide necessary information and advice to the field operations, provide information for the government authorities and people concerned. At the same time visiting the communities and the organizations, represent the authorities concerned related to the assistance for the people.
Provide relief assistance for most needy people 250,000
Community Education 300,000
Erecting of temporary Shelters 180,000
Providing of kitchen Equipment 2,500,000
Mid term Relief
Initiate Counseling centers at the camps. 125,000
Provide basic education needs for the affected children. 2,500,000
Provide medical assistance 250,000
Arrange boat repairing centers 500,000
Provide housing materials for damaged houses 1, 250,000 f.Train youth for boat building and repairing work 250,000
Train women and provide assistance for income generation 500,000
Provide boats, engines and nets 250,000,000
Long term activities identified:
Boat building 150,000,000
Building of houses 125,000,000
Total Requirement 533,605,000