Press Release: Mission East prevents the second wave of the disaster | Mission East

Press Release: Mission East prevents the second wave of the disaster

Meriam Joe at only 17 years of age broke her arm after the cyclone

After emergency relief was provided for the cyclone affected Vanuatu Islands, the fields belonging to the population will be planted with fast-growing crops to prevent a famine.

Mission East is known for fast emergency care and sustainable development assistance. After the cyclone Pam swept the Vanuatu Islands last Saturday, both are required. Therefore emergency food aid is now launched in re-cultivation of the fields. Otherwise, the vulnerable pacific islands will be facing another disaster.

-”With the devastation, there is at best only enough food for two weeks. The main thing now is to sow so we can harvest as quickly as possible. We are therefore working to re-cultivate people's fields”, says Andrew Finlay from Mission Easts’ partner TEAR Fund New Zealand.

The seeds must be planted now

Right now, seeds are distributed on the isle of Tanna which was particularly affected by the cyclone. It is all about fast growing crops such as peanuts and cassava.

-”It is important that the seeds are planted within the next couple weeks, before the dry season starts”, says Andrew Finlay, who is responsible for the organization's relief work in Vanuatu.

3800 farmers are helped and it is well needed:

-”We have lost our whole house, everything is gone. We have also lost all of our crops. I feel depressed when returning to Tanna without any possessions”, says Mela Tom who is a single mother of three children and hospitalized in the capital Port Vila with a gash in her head after an accident related to the cyclone.

-”We have lost our house and all our possessions. I only have the clothes I have on right now”, says her fellow patient Meriam Joe at the age of 17 years

Safe storage of food

The people are also taught in proper food storage. May Isaiah educates women in disaster prevention, food safety and household management.  She works for TEAR Fund's local partner and leads 5 women groups with 25 women in each group. - “When we heard that the cyclone was coming, I encouraged women to store their food, so it wasn't destroyed. After the cyclone, I visited all the women groups and asked them to bring bananas and cassava, so that I could teach them how to make banana chips and cassava flour”, she says.

 There also handed out tools for coffee cultivation, which is the main income for the island's population.