World Emergency Relief Hong Kong (WERHK) has announced the launch of the "Third Phase Relief" of its tsunami recovery operation in Southeast Asia.
With the support of the international headquarters of WER in the United Kingdom, the "Third Phase Relief" will be initiated by a Second Care Team on the anniversary of the tsunami to Jan. 2, 2006, according to a statement from WERHK.
The program will focus on the area of Batticaloa, a city on the east coast of Sri Lanka, where thousands of families are still living in tents and shelters. A project to rebuild all homes will be a very crucial part of the program. WER estimated that it will take at least three years to accomplish.
Partnering with the National Christian Evangelical Alliance in Sri Lanka, the volunteers will help families rebuild or repair their houses, and provide counseling for the children as well as conducting play therapy sessions. The new homes built will go to families who are living in the worse conditions.
On Dec. 26, 2004, a 9.15 magnitude earthquake in the Indian Ocean triggered a series of tsunamis that killed over 275,000 people, making it the deadliest tsunami ever recorded.
The First Care team of WERHK that was sent to Batticaloa found the area the most affected in the east coast of Sri Lanka. When the Care Team arrived at the coastal area of Batticaloa, they found the entire coastline, within 100 meters of the sea, completely destroyed. Meanwhile, the wells were contaminated by the salt water.
Since last December, Christian relief organizations such as the Salvation Army, World Vision, and Food for the Hungry, has actively gathered funds to repair the destruction caused, and as the anniversary approaches, they are continuing their efforts to rebuild lives.