New Delhi, January 7, 2012
CARE India, the well-known humanitarian non-governmental organisation (NGO), today said it planned to reach out to 20,000 most vulnerable families in Tamil Nadu's coastal district of Cuddalore, which was the worst-hit by the December 30 cyclone "Thane".
“As an immediate relief measure, CARE is providing the affected families with essentials like tarpaulins, candles, matchboxes as well as floor mats and hygiene kits, especially focusing on pregnant mothers and adolescent girls,” said Dr. Muhammad Musa, CEO, CARE India.
With a large number of homes and buildings completely flattened, the need for a clear reconstruction plan, along with the resources to implement it, has become an imperative necessity, he observed.
“Our aim is to reach out to 20,000 most vulnerable families (Dalits, tribals, physically challenged and households run by widows) immediately. Once this immediate crisis is managed, CARE will devote its energies to building shelters for the severely affected starting with 100-150 low-cost houses” he said.
CARE India had won praise for its work in the tsunami-hit Tamil Nadu since 2005 providing livelihoods, education and health services. “We know the people and topography of Tamil Nadu very well, a fact which has allowed us to launch major initiatives to mitigate the suffering of those devastated by cyclone Thane,” Musa said.
R. Devaprakash, the State Director for CARE in Tamil Nadu, said: "CARE India, after the need and damage assessment, is assisting the Tamil Nadu government in providing succour and basic amenities to the affected people.
“The need of the hour is to provide shelter, electricity and clean water to the survivors of the colossal tragedy. Besides essentials like tarpaulins and candles, we are also distributing a hygiene kit with the basics such as shampoo, toothpaste, towels, and sanitary napkins, minimum household needs for people who have lost everything,” he said.
Long-term sustainable support is integral to CARE India’s work. Dr. Musa said: “To overcome this disaster, CARE looks to work with the people on a long-term basis to help them with low cost housing.”
He appealed to individuals and members of the civil society to loosen their purse-strings and donate liberally to alleviate the suffering of the affected families.
“While we will pool in our resources, we must reach out for funds from various stakeholders who have helped so many in the past by donating to worthwhile causes,” he said.
The December 30 Cyclone Thane, accompanied by high speed winds, wreaked havoc across a wide swath of Cuddalore and the Union Territory of Puducherry, causing extensive damage to life and property. A total of 48 people died in the calamity.
Besides, eight lakh families have been affected with huge damages to their dwelling units and standing crops.