Thursday, 28. January 2021

Indonesia: Severe Storms on Sulawesi

Two EMS member churches affected

Hein Arina, Church President of the GMIM, personally visits the area to view the damage caused (photo: Wowor/GMIM).

Just a few days after the powerful earthquake (our report), Sulawesi was again hit by a natural disaster. Heavy rains have caused many rivers in the north of the Indonesian island to burst their banks. EMS churches in the region have already sent emergency aid.

According to official reports, at least 59 people lost their lives in the floods and landslides. Thousands have been forced to flee from their homes. Public buildings such as churches or schools were repurposed as emergency shelters. Rescue teams and residents sometimes had to wade waist deep through flooded streets. Many church buildings were badly damaged by the floods. The Evangelical Christian Church in Minahasa (GMIM) and the Evangelical Christian Church in Halmahera (GMIH) have their congregations in the areas affected.

Aid programme underway

It is still impossible to estimate the full extent of the damage. Hein Arina, Church President of the GMIM, fears that Covid-19 will continue to spread and make the situation even worse as a result of the natural disaster and poor hygienic conditions. In the meantime, the GMIM has started an emergency aid programme. It has set up aid centres and public kitchens and is distributing food, drinking water and daily necessities. Congregation members – especially those who have learnt a craft – were called upon to assist in cleaning and clear-up work and provide their know-how where needed.

Impacts of climate change

The Evangelical Christian Church in Minahasa (GMIM) and the Evangelical Christian Church in Halmahera (GMIH) are two of the nine Indonesian members churches of the EMS. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of the floods. Please include the mourning, the injured and all the helpers in your prayers. The island of Sulawesi is suffering more and more from the impacts of global climate change. Continuous heavy rain and severe storms now occur more with greater frequency.

Support our EMS Emergency Fund

After a catastrophe, the people affected are heavily dependent on aid. The Evangelical Mission in Solidarity provides pre-financing for emergency aid projects in order to respond quickly in an emergency. We use the Emergency Fund for crisis situations. Aid is quick and unbureaucratic. We send your donations where they are needed the most. We need your help so that we can deliver aid fast in future.

Donation account:
Evangelische Mission in Solidarität e.V.
Evangelische Bank
IBAN: DE85520604100000000124
Purpose “EMS Emergency Fund”

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