Category 5 Super Cyclone Winston is the strongest tropical cyclone to make landfall over Fiji on record. It has killed over 40 people as per latest reports. Hindu organizations, which have a significant presence in the island nation, have swung in to action and are involved in relief and rehabilitation work for the affected Fijians.
Below is an appeal issued by Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) Fiji along with Hindu Emergency Aid Relief Team (HEART) and Hindu Youth Fiji (HYF) –
“On behalf of VHP (Fiji), a registered charitable organization, we are urgently and very humbly soliciting your most valuable assistance for the Category 5 Super Cyclone Winston victims. Cyclone Winston that brought 325 km per hour wind speed on the night of Saturday, 20th February, 2016 has been the 2nd strongest cyclone to be recorded in world history.
Thousands of people are severely affected. Thousands are without a home, food and clean drinking water and they are living in emergency evacuation centres in most parts of the country. The extent of damage caused by the cyclone is catastrophic and unprecedented. Fiji has never seen a cyclone of this magnitude.
More than a hundred schools have been destroyed. Thousands homes are beyond any repair and it will take several months before people are able to stand up on their feet to live a normal life. Schools will be closed for months and will cause much disruption to studies. At present there is no guarantee if electricity power can be restored in the next 2 months time. Many parts of the country are without water supply. The unbearable sight of destruction resembles a war stricken zone.
I live in the township of Ba. One of the many towns severely affected with nearly 75% of the homes destroyed. While the entire country faced the brunt, Ba, Tavua and Rakiraki districts have been the most affected.
I am the country President of VHP Fiji since 2009. Most of our volunteers and their families are also affected but we have a desire to stand up and support our community and our nation in these times of desperate need of help.
I refer you to the links below and you can search using hashtag #TCWinston.
My facebook page has been constantly updated with first-hand information: www.facebook.com/jaydayalfiji [page], www.facebook.com/jaydayal
We need funds in far excess of US$250,000 to reach out to at least a 2,000 families with urgent relief to the most affected people in the above 3 districts. Please be assured that VHP Fiji does not take any administration cost from donations. All donations received are passed to the needy.
Our bank details are as follows:
Beneficiary: Vishva Hindu Parishad (Fiji)
Bank: Bank of South Pacific
Branch #: 16
We desperately look forward to your earliest help.
Yours in dharma
“Jan Sewa Hi Prabhu Sewa”
We request Hindus across the globe to assist VHP Fiji to the best of their ability.