*Note from the Editor: this post was last updated October 5
The powerful earthquake and tsunami that struck the Indonesian island of Sulawesi has left over 190,000 in urgent need of humanitarian aid.
According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA), the 7.4 magnitude earthquake and subsequent tsunami have displaced more than 70,000 people and damaged an estimated 66,000 homes.
The coastal city of Palu, which took a direct hit from the 14-foot tsunami, suffered extensive damage to important infrastructure, including roads, houses, shops, mosques, and hotels. As of October 5, the death toll in Central Sulawesi has risen to more than 1,600 and around 2,500 people have been seriously injured.
- See OCHA’s latest Infographics on the situation.
Humanitarian Aid Response
UN agencies and humanitarian organizations are already working closely with the government of Indonesia to deliver lifesaving humanitarian aid. To bolster support, Emergency Relief Coordinator and Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, Mark Lowcock, announced an allocation of $15 million from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) – the UN’s global emergency response fund.
Funds from CERF will support government-led efforts on the ground, helping to swiftly provide shelter, clean water and sanitation, health care, protection services, and more. OCHA states that access to safe water is of chief concern, “as most of water supply infrastructure has been damaged.”
“With so many people having lost all their possessions and with many basic services down, there is also an urgent and immediate need for food, clean water, shelter, medical care and psychosocial support.” – UN Resident Coordinator in Indonesia, Ms. Anita Nirody.
Here’s How You Can Help
Donate to the UN’s Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) to support relief efforts for humanitarian crises and underfunded emergencies.
More on UN Aid Efforts
Several UN agencies are mobilizing to support disaster victims (as of October 5):
- The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) is coordinating with the Indonesian Ministry of Social Affairs to aid separated and unaccompanied children.
- The World Food Programme (WFP) is supporting the Indonesian Government in distributing emergency supplies.
- The World Health Organization (WHO) is working closely with the Ministry of Health to warn of potential disease outbreaks.
- Aid workers from the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) are already in Palu to help meet the needs of women and girls, who are particularly vulnerable in the wake of disasters.
- The International Migration Agency (IOM) is sending an aid convoy, delivering 83,000 liters of water to the northern part of the island. IOM is also delivering a 10,000-liter water bladder, 4,000 emergency shelter kits and 4,000 household (NFI) kits to help survivors of the disaster.
- The UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Indonesia announced a $50.5 million plan to support disaster response in Central Sulawesi over the next three months.