Washed away, but stronger together

Posted by Tearfund

Gyan Devi lives in India. In recent years, torrential rains have caused severe flooding in her village, washing away her land and home. People lost their belongings and livelihoods; many people were swept away in the floods and lost their lives. At the time, people were totally unprepared about what to do in the face of disaster.

Together with Tearfund, a local partner and a community team began a Disaster Risk Reduction Programme in Gyan’s village, helping people to build resilience and be prepared should a disaster happen again. Communities were trained in disaster preparedness and rescue, with mock drills being practiced at least once in every six months. They were also taught first aid and learnt about early warning systems, village evacuation plans and the rescue methods during floods.

In July this year, severe flooding happened again – but, thankfully, because of the training they had received, families knew how to respond when disaster struck.

But flooding hasn’t been all that people have had to contend with this year. The Covid-19 pandemic threw communities all across India into lockdown. But, praise God, Gyan and her family’s needs have been met – they have received financial assistance from the government and Gyan has already received training in safety measures on how to prevent Covid-19 infections. Gyan, in return, has also trained her family and others in her community about the importance of handwashing and social distancing. And, together with a local community team, Tearfund has also been able to provide relief materials and rations to around 3000 vulnerable families.

So far, thanks to the efforts of Gyan and her local community, there have been no coronavirus cases in her village.

For just £9 a month, we can help people become better prepared for when disasters strike. Together, we can help show people, like Gyan, that they haven’t been forgotten.

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