India Floods Appeal: three months on
September 2013: ‘CASA reached us with food, blankets and soap. They gave us a solar lantern too which we use at night. I would like to thank them for providing us with these essential items,’ says Narayan.
More than 6,000 died following flooding and landslides in northern India. Heavy, incessant rains in mid-June destroyed homes, wrecked roads and cut off vital water and power supplies.
For 48-year old Narayan Singh and his family, the support received from Christian Aid partner Church’s Auxiliary for Social Action (CASA) was much needed - their home was destroyed and they currently live in a tent.
Like many thousands of people affected by the early monsoon rains the road to recovery will be long.
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Crops ruined: no food or income
The biggest challenge in the coming months will be helping people restore their livelihoods.
Many people have seen their crops ruined and their livestock perish - with it their only source of food and income. Many farmers will be without a harvest to rely on this winter.
Yeeshu Shukla, Christian Aid Emergency Officer said: ‘Of those who died many were young men earning a living from tourism, either as day labourers’ or mule owners offering a means of transport. Tragically, families have not only lost their loved ones but the main breadwinners.’
Earning a living: Silk and honey
In Kedar valley, one of the most affected areas, Christian Aid partners will be supporting 1,200 households to earn a living through bee keeping, silkworm rearing and silk weaving.
Yeeshu continued: ‘We are confident silk and honey will provide a means for people to earn an income and meet their basic needs.’
However, this is only the beginning. The conditions are still extremely tough and the weather is unpredictable and landslides are commonplace. Getting to remote communities remains constant challenge. This disaster will take a long time to overcome.’
Thank you to supporters
In the wake of the devastation, Christian Aid launched the India Floods appeal and donations to date total almost £190,000.
Christian Aid partners Church’s Auxiliary for Social Action (CASA), Indo-Global Social Service Society (IGSSS) and Sustainable Environment and Ecological Development Society (SEEDS) have reached 5,000 families – around 30,000 people – in Uttarakhand state, with emergency relief items such as food and medicine, blankets and tents.
Anand Kumar, Christian Aid’s India country manager said: ‘We would like to thank everyone who took the time to make a donation.
'As well as helping us reach out and meet essential humanitarian needs, such generosity is now supporting the work of rebuilding the lives of so many people affected by the severe floods in Uttarakhand, northern India. It’s with this support that our partners can continue to make a real, lasting difference.’