Magazine article Anglican Journal

Canadian Donations Aid in Reconstruction

Magazine article Anglican Journal

Canadian Donations Aid in Reconstruction

Article excerpt

Some of the donations given by Canadian Anglicans to the Primate's World Relief and Development Fund (PWRDF) for victims of the powerful tsunami that hit parts of Asia last December are now being used for reconstruction and rehabilitation purposes, including the rebuilding of homes, support for livelihood projects and re-opening of schools in Sri Lanka.

The diocese of Colombo, one of two dioceses in the Church of Ceylon, has already moved from providing basic relief to more than 500,000 people displaced from their homes to rehabilitation and reconstruction work, according to Andrea Mann, the Anglican Church of Canada's regional mission co-ordinator for Asia, South Pacific and Middle East. Ms. Mann visited tsunami-devastated areas in the southwest, south and eastern coasts of Sri Lanka last March 10-20.

Ms. Mann reported that 75 per cent of the $1,055,630 in tsunami donations raised by PWRDF has already been channeled to Action by Churches Together (ACT)--a global ecumenical agency--which has, in turn, disbursed them to churches and non-governmental organizations involved in tsunami work in Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India and Thailand. PWRDF has set aside 25 per cent of the donations for its bilateral partners involved in long-term tsunami-related projects.

ACT has so far disbursed 130 million rupees ($1.6 million) to the Church of Ceylon and has pledged an additional 95 million rupees ($1.1 million) for the rehabilitation and reconstruction efforts.

Some money given directly by Canadians to the Colombo diocese have supported the purchase of bicycles, kits for masons and carpenters, the repair of boats and the purchase of new nets for fisherfolk--all intended to help restore livelihood to 300,000 people who have lost jobs as a result of the disaster. (The tsunami also killed more than 30,000 Sri Lankans and led to the disappearance of 5,000 others.)

Ms. Mann said the church has established a process for evaluating requests as well as reporting and accountability.

"The first priority is housing," said Ms. Mann adding that during her visit to affected areas she saw people still living in tents and makeshift shanties and classrooms still being used as relief camps. …

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