Friday, September 25, 2009

Episcopal Relief & Development continues support in Sri Lanka

From ERD-

With heavy rains worsening the situation for displaced Sri Lankans, Episcopal Relief & Development is continuing to support the relief efforts.

Earlier this year, a battle between the Sri Lankan government and the Tamil Tigers rebel group forced nearly 300,000 people to leave their homes. When the fighting ended, the government declared the 25-year conflict over and established camps to temporarily house internally displaced persons (IDPs) while they await resettlement. Nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) agreed to assist in providing relief services during that period.

The process has been slow, however. Four months later, the vast majority of IDPs still live in the temporary camps and NGOs are struggling to support the continuing needs. Adding to the problem, heavy rains in mid-August flooded the camps and destroyed the common kitchens, making IDPs even more vulnerable to hunger and disease.

Episcopal Relief & Development's partners include the Organization of Eelam Refugees Rehabilitation (OfERR), the Diocese of Colombo and the Diocese of Kurunagala. OfERR has been working in Sri Lanka's Vavuniya district since last November and will continue assisting more than 11,800 in and around the Manik IDP camp for the next six months. In addition, the Dioceses of Colombo and Kurunagala are providing relief items and medicine to hospitals that have been treating IDPs since early 2009, according to Nagulan Nesiah, Episcopal Relief & Development Program Officer for Asia.

More here-

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