How ShelterBox and Rotary are working together in the Philippines

The ShelterBox/Rotary partnership in practice ……..

Rotary Service Connections

By Alex Youlten, ShelterBox staff

Tropical Storm Urduja made landfall over San Policarpio in the Eastern Samar province of the Philippines during December 2017, dumping the equivalent of two months of rain in just 48 hours. Mudslides and flooding caused considerable damage in the hardest hit areas, with the Government reporting more than 30,000 homes destroyed.

The newly established ShelterBox Operations Philippines, created by working closely with local Rotary clubs,  swiftly delivered emergency shelter and other essential aid items to communities impacted by Tropical Storm Urduja. Through the Rotary-ShelterBox project partnership for disaster relief, volunteers from both organizations have formed strong collaborations with many Rotarians around the world volunteering with and supporting ShelterBox’s relief efforts.

With the support of local Rotary clubs, the ShelterBox response team focused on coastal communities in Biliran Island where pockets of unmet need were identified. ShelterKits (tarpaulins, tools and fixings), tents, blankets, solar lights…

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Same old same old – only worse this year

Some New Year thoughts from the CEO of the ShelterBox Trust ….

Chris Warham

It’s that team of year when retrospectives and predictions come to the fore.

Does it really matter who will win this of that or whether the Wall St will finish the year at a new high or not?  Most I can ignore or spend just a few moments on.

But IRIN news – the well respected humanitarian news organisation – gave some chilling stats for their 2018 predictions.

If last year was one of the most difficult years for humanitarian crisis ever then 2018 looks likely to be even worse. IRIN News’ Top Ten for 2018 doesn’t make good reading .
irin news

  1. Syria – after 7 years of war humanitarian need is not going away
  2. Democratic Republic of Congo is unravelling with huge population displacement – 1.7 million people abandoned their homes.
  3. Yemen famine gets worse by the day.  8.4 million on the verge of starvation
  4. South Sudan looked like an…

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ShelterBox and Rotarians serve devastated communities around the world

Here’s a great article on just how much the partnership between ShelterBox and Rotary International can achieve……..

Rotary Service Connections

By Alex Youlten, Rotary Partnership Manager for ShelterBox, and Ellina Kushnir, Supervisor of Service and Engagement for Rotary International

As the 2017 Rotary year came to a close last month, Rotary and ShelterBox reflected on our most recent collaborations to save lives and help families and communities devastated by conflict and natural disasters.

Over the past year, Rotary groups around the world have raised the equivalent of US $2,846,956 to help families who have lost everything following disaster.  The funds enabled deployments to disasters in 12 countries (Afghanistan, Cameroon, Columbia, Ecuador, Fiji, Haiti, Iraq, Mozambique, Niger, Paraguay, Sri Lanka and Syria) and relief efforts included responding to floods, political conflict, landslides, earthquakes, hurricanes and cyclones to help more than 20,150 families.

Natural disasters

Responding to flash floods and mudslides in Peru, ShelterBox worked closely with Rotarians and Rotaractors to conduct an assessment of affected communities in April 2017. As…

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Tomorrow, 20th June is World Refugee Day – Dame Judi Dench endorses ShelterBox

Portrait of Dame Judi Dench

Dame Judi Dench. Image © Sarah Dunn http://www.sarahdunn.com

I support ShelterBox and the crucial work they do. Shelter and togetherness are stepping-stones to recovery.’ Dame Judi Dench on World Refugee Day

On the UN’s World Refugee Day (20th June) one of the world’s most famous Oscar-winners has given her backing to an agency that has helped hundreds of thousands of displaced people. Dame Judi Dench has generously endorsed the work of ShelterBox, saying that in a world on the run from disaster, ‘ShelterBox brings hope.’

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mother and son at a refugee camp in Iraqi Kurdistan © ShelterBox

Dame Judi Dench is celebrated from Hollywood to Broadway to the West End. She has followed the work of international disaster relief agency ShelterBox for several years. Tomorrow is World Refugee Day, held every year on 20 June, when the United Nations commemorates the strength, courage and perseverance of millions of refugees.

ShelterBox is an international charity that provides emergency shelter to families who have lost their homes through conflict and natural disaster. The charity is currently responding to refugee crises in Cameroon, Niger, Chad, Syria and Iraq. A team will also shortly be heading to Uganda, which has the world’s largest refugee camp at Bidi Bidi, home to 800,000 people, many fleeing war in South Sudan. ShelterBox works hard to understand the need created by differing emergency situations, and has created a flexible range of aid that includes tools, tents and tarpaulins for families to make urgent shelter or repair buildings where there is no other possible provision. The aid can be used to create a temporary base in communities or refugee camps, but it is also light and portable for people moving from one place to the next.

Dame Judi has supported ShelterBox in the past, and donated a signed and framed theatre poster for sale in 2011. Now, with World Refugee day being promoted by the United Nations next week, she has again expressed her support.

Dame Judi says, ‘When disaster strikes and families are left with nothing, ShelterBox brings hope. Responding to each situation individually, ShelterBox gives tailor-made support – a place to live, equipment to cook with and to purify water, mosquito nets in the summer, scarves and blankets in the winter and SchoolBoxes to provide young people with the stability of the classroom.’

Right now there are 85 million people worldwide on the move, forced to flee their towns and villages by conflict, or natural disasters such as earthquakes, landslides, flooding and cyclones. Hardworking volunteers in the ShelterBox warehouse pack the boxes, which are then delivered to some of the most remote and dangerous places on earth by our dedicated ShelterBox Response Teams.’

Happy Syrian children in their ShelterBox tent, El Minie, Lebanon ©MIkeGreenslade/ShelterBox

Happy Syrian children in their ShelterBox tent, El Minie, Lebanon ©MikeGreenslade/ShelterBox

I support ShelterBox and the crucial work they do all over the world helping families who have lost everything. Shelter and togetherness are stepping-stones to recovery. If you are able, please give what you can via www.shelterboxaustralia.org.au  ‘‘

All donations above $2 are tax-deductible, please give generously.

 

Partnering with ShelterBox on relief deployments

Rotary Service Connections

Rotarian Liz Odell of the Rotary Club of Nailsworth in England shares about her involvement with ShelterBox over the past seven years. Liz has participated in 16 deployments with ShelterBox as a response team volunteer. Here’s her story:

Video courtesy of Rotary International in Great Britain and Ireland

Interested in getting involved with ShelterBox, Rotary’s partner for disaster relief? Read the Rotary-ShelterBox partnership fact sheet and contact rotaryrequests@shelterbox.org for more information.

ShelterBox is a separate organization, independent of Rotary International and The Rotary Foundation.

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SYRIA CHEMICAL INCIDENT – ShelterBox partners in Khan Sheikhoun fear more attacks, and for the safety of their team

Hand in Hand for Syria is the London-based charity that has worked for years with ShelterBox taking aid to families displaced by Syria’s civil war. Yesterday their team in Khan Sheikhoun were at the centre of the chemical weapon incident that has caused international outrage.

In recent weeks aid workers from Hand in Hand for Syria have worked across Idlib Governorate distributing shelter aid and equipment from UK-based ShelterBox. Yesterday they found themselves caught up in a chemical weapons incident that has killed at least 70 people in the town of Khan Sheikhoun, including 20 children, and horrified the watching world.

As well as acting as an in-country distributor of ShelterBox aid, Hand in Hand for Syria also runs six hospitals, health centres, mobile clinics, ambulances and other emergency vehicles.

Their Country Director Fadi Al-Dairi says, ‘One of our offices is in Khan Sheikhoun and we have two hospitals in the vicinity. After the chemical incident we saw over 70 cases, over 300 received treatment from other health actors operating in the area, and we transported quite a few to Turkey. Sadly eight were pronounced dead at our facilities.’

‘Whilst this is a tragic event, we fear the use of chemical attacks more often. We are very concerned about the safety of our team in the absence of any proper protection in place. The unavailability of gas masks, plastic overalls, plastic tents at each and every health facility means there is a risk of spreading contamination whilst trying to do good.’

The UN Security Council is meeting today in an emergency session called for by France and the UK as international outrage mounts over the incident. ShelterBox Operations Director Darren Moss says, ‘It is saddening that it takes an appalling incident, huge loss of life, innocent children suffering, and the apparent use of illegal weapons, to put the world’s focus back on Syria.’

‘ShelterBox has a long association with Hand in Hand for Syria and other partners in the region, and we are very concerned that they have to carry out their vital humanitarian work in such dangerous conditions. Our thoughts are with our brave aid colleagues, and with all those families suffering in this seemingly intractable war.’  

Hand in Hand for Syria has been delivering aid to displacement camps across norther Syria, including those nearby Khan Sheikhoun. Thus far in 2017 ShelterBox aid has been provided to 3,430 households, and to over 20,000 families since the war began. ShelterBox supporters have funded around £2.5 million worth of aid over the last five years.

You can help by DONATING HERE