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Emergency aid reaches Vanuatu's outer islands

Vanuatu's locals are thanking Australian trade and the general public for their ongoing support after Cyclone Pam as supplies start reaching outer islands.

Vanuatu’s locals are thanking Australian trade and the general public for their ongoing support after Cyclone Pam as supplies start reaching outer islands.

Emergency aid comes after the nation was struck by category five Cyclone Pam on 13 March, which caused devastation to a number of islands, including tourist favourite Port Vila.

As well as causing significant damage to infrastructure, water supplies and electricity, Pam also left around 70 percent of the population displaced.

Since, a number of tourist organisations, including P&O and Carnival, have contributed to the recovery by donating money as well as sending bottled water and power generators.

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The Havannah, Vanuatu- boutique retreat just 30 minutes from Port Vila – extended their sincere thanks to everyone who has already donated to their fundraising for local communities in and around Havannah Harbour.

Pam devastated the local communities of Lelepa and Tanoliu and aid was not getting to them.

International aid was being prioritised to the outer islands, but on the island of Lelepa they had no drinking water at all as their one and only bore was damaged in the cyclone.

Both Tanoliu and Lelepa were facing a food crisis as their gardens were destroyed, and many families had already depleted any food stocks they had.

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Eleven families lost their homes, including seven of The Havannah staff.

Several children were getting sick from drinking contaminated water and then of course, there was a real danger that they may face an outbreak of water borne disease.

“We are trying to keep all of our 65 staff employed so they may continue to have an income to help them and their families buy some food, but it is not going to be enough for the community as a whole, or to even start helping to rebuild lost homes.”

Frederick Mclean, The Havanna General Manager

“Former guests of the Havannah and those who have visited Vanuatu will be able to attest to how beautiful the Ni-Vanuatu people are and they now need your help.”

With the complete assurance from The Havannah Resort that 100 percent of all funds raised would be used to purchase urgently needed food and drinking water, repair water and sanitation infrastructures, and provide building materials for those in need, the call for help went out on Facebook and the results have been amazing, he said.

In a matter of hours, the donations had reached $11,500 and now, after 10 days, the total raised stands at $37,796.

Frederick and Victoria MacLean are overwhelmed and humbled by the generosity of people donating money and their own time to assist.
They have been able to feed over 200 households (about 450 people) and now look to providing some shelters for the families that have lost their homes if more funds can be raised.

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