China earthquake: Oxfam helping survivors far from the epicenter
Hong Kong - Oxfam Hong Kong teams are at work in Sichuan and Gansu Provinces, focusing on providing water and public health facilities for survivors in remote rural areas, as the public health situation is deteriorating, and the risk of disease is growing. Oxfam aid so far includes portable toilets, medicine, drinking water, tents, blankets, clothing, milk and high-energy biscuits.
In Sichuan, Oxfam Hong Kong has been authorized by the Poverty Alleviation and Development Office to be working in remote areas, helping people far from the epicenter who have not yet been assisted. Oxfam, with twenty years of experience working in mainland China, has sourced the relief items; this first phase of supplies costs $1 million.
John Sayer, Director General of Oxfam Hong Kong said, “Oxfam Hong Kong is increasing our capacity in the crisis – we have now committed over $3.2 million. Having secured an arrangement with government units to provide relief in remote areas, Oxfam’s five relief teams are putting all of our resources into helping people stranded in rural areas away from the epicenter.”
Oxfam is working alongside several government units, mainland-based NGOs, and community groups, including a volunteer medical team in Sichuan.
As of the morning of 16 May, Hong Kong time, Oxfam has received $1.6 million in donations. The agency appeals for more donations, as this disaster is the largest earthquake in China for over 30 years, and the death toll is now estimated to be reaching 50,000. Rehabilitation and development efforts will take months, if not years.
Oxfam in mainland China Oxfam Hong Kong has been working in mainland China since 1987. In the 2006-07 financial year, Oxfam allocated over $8.7 million on development and emergency projects there, working alongside about 140 local partner organizations. Every year, on average, the agency allocates about $1 million on emergency/disaster management projects in mainland China.
For more information, please contact:
Keith Wong (Communications Officer)
Tel:+ 852 3120 5281 / 9426 2764
Lum Kwok-choi (Communications Manager)
Tel: + 852 3120 5285 / 9098 5887