How to help Sri Lanka’s flood relief effort
The world’s largest democracy in a country of some 7.2 million people is struggling to recover from the devastating floods that ravaged the country over the past week.
Amid reports of death tolls of over 30,000 and widespread damage, the country has received more than $1 billion in aid, but a lack of funds and logistical support has forced relief agencies to step up their efforts, raising fears of a humanitarian disaster.
The Sri Lankan government says more than 70 percent of the country is still without power and electricity is only available to about 2,600 households.
The government has appealed to the international community to help the country rebuild.
The Sri Lankans have also pledged to donate their excess electricity to the poor and needy.
As a result of the devastation, hundreds of thousands of people are expected to return to their homes as the rainy season begins on Monday, when the government will be expecting to be inundated with new arrivals from across the country.
But it’s unclear when the floodwaters will recede completely.
In the meantime, the government is relying on its own resources, which include the military, a large army, a navy and a large number of volunteer corps.
The military has dispatched an aircraft carrier and a amphibious landing craft to help protect coastal communities, and a helicopter has been used to transport aid and relief materials.
“It is absolutely imperative that we make sure that we provide the greatest amount of resources possible to the people,” said R.N. Kondilal, the chief of staff of the Sri Lankar Army.
“If we are not able to provide, there is a risk that we will lose people to the flood.”
Kondilala said that the government has been coordinating with international partners to send aid to the vulnerable people and communities that are most affected by the floods.
For example, the military is using its military equipment to help distribute water, and the navy has sent boats to ferry supplies, he said.
The floodwaters have also inundated several key bridges across the nation, causing major disruptions to roads and other infrastructure.
But the army has been able to use its amphibious transport vessels to move the stranded people back to their villages and towns.
The army is also using a small number of troops and its own helicopter to ferry aid, Kondile said.
The helicopters have been used for transporting supplies in the past, but the military has never done so before this time, he added.
The military is also helping the government recover some of the water that has been stored in tanks that are being used to treat the water, he noted.
As of Saturday morning, about 1,000 people were still missing, but it is unclear when they will be able to return home.
Kondile and other officials said that a significant number of homes that are under water have already been washed away and that rescue efforts are still on-going.
Many people are still living in their homes, but officials said they expect to find others who are safe.
The government has also launched a website that will allow people to share their information on how to help and how to donate, Kontilala told reporters on Saturday.
The website is still under construction, and it will have more details about how to contribute as it becomes available, he told reporters.
The U.S. has also provided some aid, sending two ships that are used to carry humanitarian aid to Sri Lanka and other nations that are struggling with natural disasters.
The U.N.-brokered Joint Emergency Management Committee has also dispatched four aircraft to fly over parts of Sri Lanka.