International aid agency Oxfam has begun distributing relief items to survivors of China’s deadly earthquake, including blankets for 2,000 people who are living in a temporary camp set up in a racecourse in the town of Jiegu in Yushu County, Qinghai.
Around 20,000 people are currently living in this camp and the needs are urgent. A second shipment of blankets for 2,000 more people is being flown from Oxfam Hong Kong’s warehouse in Yunnan to Xining, the capital of Qinghai.
“Oxfam colleagues and I slept in our four-wheel-drive vehicle last night,” said Aman Yee, Deputy Programme Manager of the Rural Development and Disaster Management Team of Oxfam Hong Kong. “The temperature was at the freezing point. Survivors in tents urgently need blankets to stay warm, to stay alive. Oxfam is assisting 2,000 people in Jiegu so far, and tomorrow, we will assist another 2,000.”
“Qinghai is one of China’s poorest provinces. Poverty is the key reason why people are vulnerable to disasters. Oxfam is liaising with local government units to plan how we can best help the most impoverished people in this crisis,” Aman Yee added.
Another team based in Oxfam’s office in Chengdu, Sichuan, is now in Shiqu, a county in Sichuan also badly hit by the earthquake. They will soon distribute blankets for 2,000 people and rolls of durable waterproof fabric for 4,000 people as temporary shelter.
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