INDEPENDENT NEWS

NZ Pockets Help Samoan Rebuild

Published: Tue 22 Dec 2009 02:13 PM
NZ Pockets Help Samoan Rebuild
Real money has enabled real help in Samoa by Rotary.
Stuart Batty, director of Rotary’s international community development activity in New Zealand, says the cash given by New Zealanders to Rotary’s appeal through Westpac Bank after the tsunami in September is helping fund the rebuilding of people’s lives and their communities.
Rotary has engaged local labour in Samoa to help rebuild the Poutasi Village School as well as install guttering around larger community buildings. Water tanks have also been supplied to communities along the Aleipata District coast.
“We have also set up a scholarship programme so that children of parents who have lost their livelihoods in the tsunami can also pay their school fees,” Mr Batty says. “And we are funding outreach health screening for children and adults who may need treatment for ongoing health issues from the tsunami.”
Schools have received shipments of desks, chairs, materials and other resources from New Zealand through Rotary. After the New Zealand High Commission in Apia alerted Rotary to the lack of preschool facilities in the worst affected area, Rotary also allocated some funds to help out.
“Rotary was one of the first on the ground in Samoa with Emergency Response Kits and, together with the Shelter Box organisation, quickly provided tsunami victims with the shelter and essential day-to-day requirements,” Mr Batty says. “We have replenished out stock of Emergency Response Kits now and naturally hope we do not need them during the Christmas holiday season.
“The new Emergency Response Kits and all this rebuilding work are possible because of the generosity of New Zealanders and Rotarians. They should know what they have helped us to achieve.”
ENDS

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