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News & Events
NGOs readying to provide succour
The Hindu, Chennai, Dec. 28
Non-governmental organisations in the city have got together to supplement the State Government's efforts at providing quicker relief to those affected by tsunami in the State.

They have already begun an assessment of the situation to arrive at the needs and provide relief. Drawing on his experience from aiding in times of natural disasters, Raju Rajagopal of the Promise of India, said providing cooked food 48 hours after the disaster was not a good idea. The better way was to supply dry rations such as rice, dhal, oil, salt, onions and turmeric.

The Red Cross has prepared a list of articles and materials the people want. The requirements include cotton rolls and fabrics, blankets, bed sheets, kitchen sets, Petromax lamps, quilt, mats, towels, plates, tumblers and sweaters. These can be deposited either at the Red Cross office at 50, Montieth Road or at Real Image at 7B, Balaji Nagar, 3rd Street, Royapettah.

Prolonged process
All NGOs agree that rehabilitation will be a long haul, given the shock suffered by the victims.

They say the affected people should be encouraged to return to their homes or huts. If the dwellings were washed away, they should be encouraged to rebuild their homes and provided with tarpaulin or plastic sheets, bamboos and roofing equipment.

Distribution of cash was not a good idea after the third day of the incident, say the NGOs. The affected should be encouraged to begin rebuilding their broken lives and all forms of support could be provided.

Gujarat gesture
There have been spontaneous offers of help and support from all over the country, say NGO representatives.

Representatives from the Bhoomika Trust and the Promise of India, who travelled to Gujarat after the 2001 earthquake there, said their counterparts in that State now "want to return the favour." They have been asked to wait till such time the assessment here is completed. Some Mumbai organisations have also come forward to send supplies. The NGOs will at a later stage provide counselling to the affected. They also plan to rope in the NIMHANS for grief management.

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