You may have heard about the devastating earthquakes that rocked the Indonesian Island of Lombok recently. We set up a gofundme page, and sent over a team to help out where they could; getting immediate supplies to those who need it most. Here’s an update on how they’ve gone to date...
The locals of Lombok need your help!
We have now had several members of our team and also group members volunteer to go over to help the locals of Lombok and help assist with rebuilding homes and supplying food and water.
The team arrived in Lombok, and set up a base/plan of action. Their immediate goal was to load up on supplies, and get to those in need ASAP. They loaded a truck with
- 2000L of water,
- 2500 eggs,
- 1200 packages of noodles,
- dozens of blankets and
- cooking oil.
They headed straight to the north where the earthquake was most destructive; and were greeted by very grateful families. It is amazing that after all of this, the locals of Lombok still manage to keep smiling and remain positive.
The destruction first hand is very confronting, something our team have never experienced. No photos will do it justice. Entire villages have been levelled to the ground with only portions of walls and the odd pillar still standing. Vehicles are crushed from toppled buildings; and roads have cracked causing difficult driving conditions to get aid to those in dire need of it.
After offloading the first batch of supplies to the northern villages, the team returned to the storage area, to reload once again. This time to Pandanan Village, and then to Teluk Kombal (a village of roughly 1000 people). They distributed the remainder of the supplies. The team have been welcomed with open arms and handshakes, and were drinking coffee with the locals. Even through all of this destruction, they’re still laughing and joking around – their homes and livelihoods have been destroyed, but their spirits aren’t broken.
After their goodbyes, the team returned back to base, to purchase further food, drink and essentials. Unfortunately the earthquakes in Lombok continued and thousands of lives have now been destroyed. Entire villages have been knocked down, resorts and hotels have shut, leaving nearly everyone without a job and tourism completely dying out.
Our current TruTraveller’s on their Bali & Beyond tour have however continued their trip to Lombok as fortunately the south of the island (where we go on the trip), was not affected. The group decided to take a day out of the tours activities to put some of the money raised from you all to use.
They started the day by heading to a supermarket to collect supplies for the villages. Although they were on a limited budget they managed to buy 31 boxes of water and 350kg of rice to distribute out to the locals of Lombok. The team split the supplies and dropped one to a Hindu and another to a Muslim village. Both were completely knocked down and destroyed from the earthquake. The smile on the locals faces when they brought the supplies was unforgettable however this was only just enough to last them two days of food and water.
The government in Bali have provided some tents for the families to live in along with coming around once a week to give out some water and food. However, due to the large amount of people who’s lives have been affected there is still so much more to do to help them. It’s going to take months for their lives to rebuild which is why we still are desperate to raise more money to help them recover from this traumatic event.
Any donations will help so please join us helping to rebuild the lives in Lombok, and continue donating via our gofundme page. The main concern now, is clean water. Even villages closer to Mataram (the capital of Lombok) are being severely affected, as all the water going to Lombok is being sent and distributed up north. The markets are full of food and easy enough to purchase locally but water is scarce.
We need to keep in mind, that this aid is only a short term solution. Villages need rebuilding, and infrastructure needs repairing; it’s not going to be an easy process. There is no work, and therefore no income for those that need it desperately. It’s not long until the rainy season in the region, and these people need a roof over their heads before it arrives.
One of our group leaders, Chevvy has also raised money along side this for a family that he would call his own brothers. Here is his story…
On numerous occasions, this family have given me so much in terms of hospitality. They have made my overseas journeys 100% authentic, even though they never had much. To those who I have reached out to in the last 3 days, one of the village elders has a message for you. Well done guys! The money to come into my personal account (not including the TruTravels fund me account) has already managed to reach $2,200 NZD. THIS IS HUUUUUGE. For a family who has received absolutely no help from the government this money has basically ensured that they will not starve and that they will not go thirsty. This family is of 62 people including babies and grandparents. As us Cantabrians know the sheer devastation this brings to a home, except these guys don’t have insurance to back them up. So you guys have an idea of what this type of money can achieve! It has helped them buy new tarps to make tents and sleep in (tried to buy them tents but they wanted food instead), food and water to feed 62 people, 3 times a day, for over a week and a half. Also had enough to buy a few bits and bobs for taking down their houses to start the rebuild. The family cant describe how thankful they are, but I made a promise that I will not stop trying to help them until they have jobs and houses again, so more help from more people will be greatly appreciated. Much love from Lombok team xoxo
To keep up to date with the progress or to find out what you can do to help, head to our Facebook page. We have also been setting up some help groups on Facebook for anyone interested in heading over there, so if helping the locals of Lombok is something you would like to do, then please get in touch!