March 11, 2005: CMAT provided an update today on its emergency Tsunami relief projects for orphanages in Tamil Nadu, India, and medical team missions to Sri Lanka and Indonesia.
Kanniyakumari, Tamil Nadu, India: Needs assessments were completed by CMAT Volunteers Tara Newell and James Caddell, two Canadians working with nine non-government funded orphanages in Kanniyakumari district, Tamil Nadu.
More than 10,000 persons perished in this area. ‘Life kits’ consisting of 1 large bed mat (for sleeping), Hygiene kit (including toothbrush, toothpaste, laundry soap and body soap), and a large aluminium wash bucket were purchased for 1,210 orphans living at 9 orphanages in the area. In addition, a milk cow was purchased for Sirumalar Home for Children and the children are receiving a serving of milk each day. Moreover, ceiling fans have been installed in the classrooms, and proper classroom furniture has been purchased. In addition, the children received medical exams and twenty-two severe cases of scabies were identified. Five of the children required immediate hospitalization with the ‘worst cases that had ever been seen’ by physicians at the hospital.
Trincomalee district, Sri Lanka: CMAT has dispatched a Canadian volunteer to monitor its projects in Sri Lanka. Ms. Edith Fortier, a business graduate from Montreal is observing distribution of 37,000 lbs of relief items sent to Sri Lanka, and gifted to the Sri Lankan Social Ministry. Moreover, she is documenting projects completed by CMAT partner Serendib Institute of Research and Development on past and present Tsunami relief projects. She accompanied a 7 physician, 1 nurse medical team to the under serviced areas along the east coast Sri Lanka including Pudawaikattu, Kuchaveli, Nilaveli and Irrakkakandy in Trincomallee district. Twelve other volunteers also accompanied the team. In total, the devoted doctors and volunteers saw 827 people who received medication when it was available, as well as advice on healthy nutrition and healthcare.
Sumatra, Indonesia: CMAT Medical team leader, Dr. David Ratcliffe, his wife Una LeDrew, and Ms. Devi Crockford continue their work on a medical ship that is providing medical care and humanitarian relief to communities between Meuloboh and Banda Aceh, made inaccessible by the December 26 Tsunamis.
Pictures and and update are pending. The team is the third one that has been sent from Canada. CMAT is also providing physicians, nurses, medicines and medical supplies for the Malahayati hospital in Banda Aceh for the next six months.
A report is currently being prepared with pictures for the 24 York-Region District School board who donated more than $61,000 USD ($77,000 CAD) to CMAT for its Tsunami relief efforts. The massive fundraising effort was coordinated by Mr. Jeewan Chanicka, a teacher at Ashton Meadows Public School in York.
CMAT is grateful for the generous support of its donors.