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[e-drug] Tsunami view from the field (Sri Lanka)

E-DRUG: Tsunami view from the field
[Message from Dr Bala of HAI Asia, circulating in NGO circles. Thanks to 
Beverley for pointing it out. WB]

Dear All,

Our sincere thanks for several messages expressing concerns and 
providing us support, solidarity and offers of assistance.  Several 
friends and well wishes have requested to be informed of what is 
happening and how they and their friends can help our office in 
providing relief.

One common question many have posed is "We see the CNN and BBC.  But 
what is actually happening in your country?"  Well this is a question 
I cannot answer since from 26th up till today I have not gone out of 
the office or home.  Our office is on the second floor and home on 
the first.

Today I participated in the inaugural relief operational meeting 
convened by the Consortium of Humanitarian Agencies (CHA).  All 
International NGOs and several national NGOs working of Tsunami 
relief were present.  The meetings will be held weekly on Friday 
mornings.  The objective of the meeting is "A forum to 
comprehensively access information on all relief efforts currently 
underway, so that future activities maybe better planned and 
coordinated in order to ensure the affected are provided the 
necessary immediate care within a framework of long-term assistance 
and rehabilitation."

Updated information will be available on the following key links - 
web and database:

Centre for National Operations - http://www.cnosrilanka.org/
Lanka National Disaster Management Centre - http://www.lk.undp.org/ndmc
SAHANA - Database -
CHA Tsunami 2004 Information Centre - 
The Foundation for Co-existence - Tsunami News Updates - 

We have down loaded the latest statistics (slmap.gif) is attached. 
These will be updated regularly in the CHA Tsunami 2004 Information 
Centre website. 

Let me brief you on what the country and the NGOs need.  There are a 
few attachments.  Please open them only if you will be interested in 

1.    What is most needed is money.  I am pleased to inform you that 
following e-mail and telephone communication Sabine Eckart Medico 
International Germany will be visiting us with a small team to meet 
with NGO partners early next week to make a short term assessment of 
our needs.  I am arranging her to meet Dr Vinay Ariyaratne from 
Sarvodaya, Ms Nimalka Fernando of Ruhunu Gammi Kantha Association and 
Mr Sarath Fernando of MONLAR.  This will be followed a second team 
which will visit us on 20th January to make assessment of 
intermediate and long term needs.  We are looking forward to these 
visits and follow up activities.  In my previous mail I gave you 
details of three Bank accounts by these three NGOs.  Donations are 

2.    Tsunami orphans.

The estimates on Tuesday 4th January was that a minimum of 300 
infants and young children have lost both their parents.  It is 
feared that the final count may be high.

Specialist NGOs are now developing plans to take care of the orphans. 

Initial suggestions include the following.

1.    Legal adoption

2.    Sponsoring - a member of orphans have been taken by close 
relatives, who will need financial support.  Donors will be invited 
to sponsor these orphans in homes.  The present estimate is about Rs 
30,000 (US$ 30.00) a month for a minimum of five years.

3.    Setting up orphanages

This week we were informed that several organizations and temples in 
Canada are interested in supporting orphanages.  This is a good 
start.  Ms Passanna from our office is liaising with the National 
NGOs who are working on this.  She will give you periodic updates 
(<mailto:passanna@haiap.org>passanna@haiap.org) Please contact her.

4.    Work carried out by National NGOs

Several national NGOs are working round the clock.  Many persons 
wanted to know the type of work carried out by NGOs.  Let me give you 
first one example.  Those interested in understanding the type of 
activities going on please open attachment (Plan of Action for 
Emergency Assistance).  This is a 10 page document which gives "Plan 
of action for Emergency Assistance and Short Term Relief" by the 
Movement for National Land and Agricultural Reform (MONLAR).

Those interested in health kindly refer to item 3 on page 2 "Health 
and Medical Services - Health Service Trade Union Alliance is already 
working through Nine mobile Health Units - Each unit has 15 persons 
including medical doctors and will work in 30 refugee camps.  They 
are linked with the People's Movement for Rights of Patients (PMRP) 
to obtain medical personal and guidance.  PMRP is an associate member 

Please refer to activity 2 "Assets mobile health unit of HSTUA" on 
pages 6 & 7.  This refers to essential medicines needed for all the 
30 camps.  Attachments (Drugs Requirement - N & E, South) gives the 
details of medicines and quantities requires for refugee camps in 
Galle, Hambanthota, Jaffna, Kilinochi, Matara & Mullaitivu in the 
North, East and South.  These are some of the most devastated areas 
in the country.  Please refer to Attachment (slmap).

4.    Items needed by both the Ministry of health and the NGOs are 
water purification tablets (or chlorine tablets), Tropical 
chlorinated lime.

We have requested donations from a few sources.  We are waiting to 
get them.  However we may need more.  I shall appreciate if any of 
you can find a source for donation.  Let me know.

Kind regards,

HAI Asia
Sri Lanka

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