Balasore diocese tries to help cyclone affected

Torrential rains and floods that followed the cyclone submerged hundreds of villages in Balasore and Mayurbhanj districts, displacing over 100,000 people.

November 11 2013, 5:51 PM
Balasore diocese tries to help cyclone affected

Balasore diocese in the eastern Indian state of Odisha has organized special collection of funds to help victims of cyclone Phailin.

The cyclone that hit Odisha and Andhra Pradesh states in early October has caused untold misery, with over 930 villages flooded, thousands of homes destroyed and more than a 100,000 people displaced. Relief work has been hampered by inaccessibility as most areas don’t have roads.

Torrential rains and floods that followed the cyclone submerged Balasore and Mayurbhanj districts. Phailin lasted only 24 hours, but the overflowing of swollen rivers caused damage to farmlands.

“We are working in close collaboration with the state government. We have provided direct support to people who are suffering," said Bishop Thomas Thiruthalil of Balasore 

He said for two weeks, diocesan volunteers organized camp kitchens and provided shelter for refugee communities in two districts.

Caritas has distributed food to displaced families in remote areas and prepared tents for temporary shelter. "We have equipped ourselves with 1,200 litres of potable water, while our mobile clinics with doctors and nurses have been working tirelessly for two weeks," the bishop said.

"There is a huge damage to the local economy; people here were mainly farmers and cattle ranchers. Large coastal areas are still vulnerable to flooding, and dozens of villages are at high risk,” he said.

The bishop appealed to the state “to develop a land use planning that is sustainable and resilient in the face of possible natural disasters."

Source: Agenzia Fides