“We saw the earth move like waves. Houses were on top of each other. The earth opened up and the houses just fell in. Everything was gone.” A man in Palu, Indonesia, described the 7.5 magnitude earthquake that devasted the island of Sulawesi in 2018.
In another South Asian country, families in several of the communities where OM has been working have limited access to employment and food, due to the ongoing unrest. OM aims to distribute food provisions in at least 12 communities every month, as security conditions permit. Each community is home to about 120 families. Food packages will include a sack of rice, three litres of cooking oil, and salt.
Over the last twenty years, the scale and impact of global disasters has increased, from tsunamis, earthquakes and floods to the impact of wars, famine and persecution. The poor and marginalised are most affected. They simply do not own enough to rebuild their lives, businesses, homes or even provide rice on the table for the next day.
Help covers two main categories: the first being immediate response. Teams of dedicated relief workers initiate immediate on-the-ground assessment and emergency life-saving action. OM’s rapid response team of skilled helpers either enters disaster areas immediately or coordinates response from abroad to guide national workers through a trusted and proven partner organisation.
The second, less publicised category is the medium- to long-term rebuilding of peoples’ lives and livelihoods: after the news cameras have moved on. Through this ongoing support, workers show Jesus’ love in practical ways.