Massive flooding in Nepal (and region) sees Disaster Aid on the ground with materials and assistance
We will provide an update on this calamitous event that has seen hundreds killed, but first, it is timely to provide some background about us, what we do, what we plan to do, and, how you can help us in our work … as volunteers in Rotary.
And, just a reminder that we are increasingly using Facebook for updates etc. so please, find us on Facebook to learn more about what we are doing and where, and our needs. Please go to: https://www.facebook.com/disasteraidaustralia
Disaster Aid Australia (DAA), a Rotary Club project that began in 2010 (as a company limited by guarantee, and, with full DGR tax deductibility for donations) is a member of the over-arching body known as Disaster Aid International (DAI). Other members of DAI are Rotary Club projects in Malaysia, UK & Ireland, USA and soon, from other countries.
The chairman of DAI is David Langworthy (a member of the Endeavour Hills Rotary Club in D9820 Vic.) who is also deputy chairman of DAA (its chairman is Bob Powell, also from that club), and much of the administrative work of DAI is done through the DAA office in Dandenong (SE Melbourne) kindly donated by an Endeavour Hills club member.
We recently updated our office computers but, in transferring files and data, we have discovered problems that had affected our database. We are working hard to rectify this – and rebuild as necessary – and ask for your understanding. Please remember, our human resources are all volunteers.
DARTs – Disaster Aid Response Team members – are a vital part of our organisation. We have highly trained Australian volunteers (many are Rotarians) who have worked in Haiti, Sudan, Pakistan, the Philippines and Malaysia delivering aid to those often in desperate need.
They work with locals (including NGOs, government and other agencies, and Rotarians) as they rebuild their lives and communities.
How we have changed
Those deployments have taught us a lot. In particular, working in the Philippines with local NGO The Balay Mindanaw Foundation after two massive Typhoons (preceded by an earthquake), we asked affected local people what they needed most.
Rather than provide them with a box of aid that "we" considered they would need, we found by asking, that they wanted (for example) tarpaulins … not tents … and basic building materials. So that is exactly what we did. Importantly, we (our DARTs) stayed on, living in the villages with local people and providing direct and extensive assistance.
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