Oxfam Australia appeals for donations to assist the victims of the South Asia floods

Emergencies, Media Releases article written on the 09 Aug 2007

MELBOURNE – Oxfam Australia today launched an appeal in aid of people in India, Bangladesh and Nepal who have been affected by the worst floods in one hundred years.

Latest estimates indicate that over 28 million people have been affected by flooding and there could be worse to come, while the UN expressed serious concerns about the looming health crisis.

Funds raised through this appeal will be used to provide food, emergency shelter, hygiene items and clean water and safe sanitation in Bangladesh, India and Nepal. Oxfam is planning to reach around 500,000 people in these three countries.

“Oxfam is already on the ground working together with local partners to provide urgently needed aid. But the magnitude of this disaster is such that we will need more financial support to continue our work,” said Andrew Hewett, Executive Director, Oxfam Australia. “We are relying on the generosity of Australians to help us prevent further suffering. Australians have demonstrated time and again that they are both willing and able to help those less fortunate than themselves,” he added.

Just last week Oxfam and its partners in Bihar, northern India, were rescuing stranded villagers using small pre-positioned boats, and they already started providing essential non-food items and temporary shelter for displaced persons from the existing emergency stocks.

“It has become clear to us over the last week that much more help is needed. Millions of the very poorest have lost their homes, their possessions and their livelihoods,” said Mr Hewett.

Oxfam has been responding to floods in West Bengal and Orissa since July. Oxfam plans to reach around 50,000 families in four of India’s eastern states; Assam, West Bengal, Orissa and Bihar. Oxfam is also working in Bangladesh and Nepal, focusing on shelter, public health, food and safe drinking water.

Oxfam Australia is a secular, non-government, not-for-profit aid and development organisation that works in 27 countries around the world. A member of Oxfam International, Oxfam Australia is also a member of the Australian Council for International Development.