Relief and development work in Indonesia’s quake zone ramps up to next phase.

By July 6, 2006

Indonesia (MNN)–In the days and months since a massive quake struck Yogyakarta and Central Java, aid has slowed to a trickle.

In fact, the United Nations’ latest report shows that only $20 million dollars’ worth of pledged assistance has actually come in. The disaster struck in late May, and killed more than 5,700 people and left many homeless on Java island.

That leaves a large task unfinished. With little funding coming in on the official lines, the pipeline of assistance is becoming less efficient.

One of the Christian aid groups working tirelessly in the region refuses to back down. Food For the Hungry continues to respond to the emergency needs there.

On the ground since the early hours following the quake, the ministry has been heavily involved in relief work, and committed to a long-standing effort.

Recovery has now shifted out of the crisis period and into a secondary phase. On-the-ground teams are settling into distribution of cooking kits and other tools, construction of transitional shelters and the construction of public latrines and wells.

Food for the Hungry has purchased shovels, hoes, wheelbarrows, crowbars, and cement buckets. These tools will be used by the families to clear their land in preparation for the construction of transitional shelters.

These wooden homes will be built for the most vulnerable community members such as the elderly, widows and injured.

Food for the Hungry’s goal is to partner with the local churches to help them build and strengthen the developing relationships in their communities.

At present, they’re working with a local congregation called GPDI Fajar Pengharapan (Ray of Hope Pentecostal Church).

Their prayer is that stereotypes will be broken and walls come down for greater friendship and understanding between Christians and Muslims so that Christ’s love can flow freely to these hurting communities even beyond this disaster.

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