Floodings and Landslides, a wave of destruction and death

East Timor Floods 350.jpgHowever, rescuers continue to search for dozens of missing people, after the floods and landslides uprooted trees, damaged infrastructure and swept away villages in Timor-Leste and Indonesia.

According to preliminary reports from Timor-Leste, approximately 10,325 people have been affected by the extreme weather, with over 76 per cent of the affected people from Dili municipality. The rains have been so heavy in Dili that the presidential palace in the capital has been transformed into a mud pit.

In Indonesia at least 2,655 people over 18 districts have been affected by the flooding or landslides, with significant damage to households, bridges and roads.

The packed shelters across Timor-Leste have increased concerns about a potential spike in COVID-19 cases, as the country is currently experiencing the highest number of COVID-19 cases since the start of the pandemic. Despite the current lockdown, families were forced to evacuate as a result of the flooding.

“It is critical that we respond quickly to support the people impacted by this emergency,” said Bernice Sarpong, Caritas Australia's Humanitarian Program Coordinator for Asia. “Timor-Leste has experienced a spike in COVID-19 cases over the past month, and the last thing we want is a widespread outbreak that could overwhelm the country’s fragile healthcare system.”

Vital infrastructure for fighting COVID-19 has also been damaged, including the main laboratory where testing is conducted and the warehouse where the majority of COVID-19 supplies are stored.

Caritas Australia is working with local partners to assess needs on the ground and provide immediate support to vulnerable communities. Vehicles and staff have been provided to support initial assessment and food distribution in evacuation centres.

Caritas Australia is accepting donations through its Timor-Leste & Indonesia Floods Emergency Appeal to provide support for emergencies like flooding and landslides in Timor-Leste.

Call 1800 024 413 toll free to provide much needed support to some of our closest neighbours OR post to PO Box 130 Numurkah 3636.