EDF Sends Money to Thailand, Cambodia for Flood Response

Grants have been made for flood response in Thailand and Cambodia by the Church of the Brethren’s Emergency Disaster Fund (EDF). Also in recent grants is support for disaster relief following wildfires in Texas.

A grant of $20,000 responds to a Church World Service (CWS) appeal following monsoon rains in Thailand, which resulted in extensive flooding. Funds support CWS work through partner Church of Christ in Thailand and the ACT Alliance, providing emergency food, survival packets, and shelters to survivors.

Heavy monsoon rains plagued southeast Asia this fall and severely affected one-third of Thailand’s land mass, according to the CWS appeal. A total of 3.4 million acres of farmland–an area 13 times the size of Hong Kong–was submerged under water with more than 12.3 million livestock affected and more than 2 million tons of un-milled rice destroyed. Authorities said the death toll exceeded 307. More than 2.4 million people including 700,000 children were affected.

In Cambodia, a grant of $10,000 responds to a CWS appeal following extensive seasonal flooding. The money helps provide emergency food and water purification tablets for the most affected and poorest families. According to CWS, Cambodia has experienced its worst seasonal flooding in more than a decade, with 17 of 24 provinces affected. Some 1,500,000 people have been affected and more than 90,000 families displaced. About 13 percent of Cambodia’s rice crop was flooded, and almost half of it destroyed. Shortages and high prices are likely to make rice unaffordable through to the next harvest period in Dec. 2012. CWS is responding as part of a joint six-month effort of ACT Alliance members. Distribution of rice and other food has begun, with an overall objective to provide food and water purification tablets to 8,859 of the most affected and poorest families in six of the nation’s provinces.

A grant of $2,500 from the Emergency Disaster Fund has been given to a CWS appeal following multiple wildfires in east-central Texas in September and October. In Bastrop County fires destroyed 1,700 homes of which approximately half were not insured. Additionally four churches were destroyed. In the Spicewood area approximately 5,600 acres were burned and 52 homes were destroyed. Most families affected were lower middle class. The grant supports CWS efforts to assist local Long Term Recovery Committees with start-up grants and group training.

To support the work of the Emergency Disaster Fund go to www.brethren.org/edf .