JDC has raised over $15 million in contributions from more than 30,000 individual donor and local Jewish federations to assist the victims.
In Chennai, India, JDC is working with the Disaster Mitigation Institute to re-establish livelihoods and rebuilding housing. In collaboration with the Meenakshi Mission Hospital, more than $300,000 worth of pharmaceuticals will be distributed to four mobile clinics in Tamil Nadu. A partnership with Caritas/Catholic Relief in the hard-hit areas of Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, and Tamil Nadu provides basic household supplies and temporary shelter, as well as psychosocial support services to 30,000 families. JDC will be partnering with Vardhman Sanskar Dham to rebuild 67 houses in Koolaiyur and Pariyakuppam villages in Tamil Nadu. The following is from a field report by Judy Amit, JDC Country Director for India, on the Krishna district:
"It is an area of small villages whose residents make a living from fishing, salt farming and lime manufacture… The Tsunami flooded the salt farms [where lime is produced], causing damage and a loss of the crop…it will take at least two months before the land can be cleaned and dried out so that farming can resume and the people can again earn a living. Many fishermen in the area have lost their boats and nets...For some, the tsunami has become known as the 'Killer Wave.'"
In Sri Lanka, JDC is working with the renowned local NGO, Sarvodaya, to provide psychosocial support services for women, children, and the elderly, as well as livelihood support and capacity building in the Ampara, Kalmunai, and Batticaloa Districts on the eastern coast of Sri Lanka. Judy Amit's observations:
"The coastal areas that have been affected are some of the poorest in the country – the north, east and some parts of the south. Most of those whose lives have been devastated are those who lived in the least desirable areas closest to the beach, often sandwiched between the sand and the train tracks or road. They are the poorest of the poor. These are the people who are most going to need our assistance for the long term."
JDC is working with its long-time partner, the International Rescue Committee, in the hard-hit Aceh Province of Indonesia, focusing on the identification and protection of separated and/or vulnerable children. Specific activities to respond to the psychosocial needs of the children, their families, and communities will follow.
JDC is partnering in Thailand with Chabad, bringing medical help, meals, and clothing to survivors. A team will soon go to Indonesia and Thailand to identify more partners and programs where JDC can be of impact.
A portion of funds raised by JDC will be retained for intermediate-term rehabilitation, such as rebuilding schools, clinics, and/or orphanages. This work will begin as soon as the situation on the ground allows.
JDC is also overseeing the 38-member Jewish Coalition for Asia Tsunami Relief allowing North American Jewish organizations to coordinate efforts and maximize donor dollars.