09/10/2019, 12.58
VIETNAM
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Typhoon Kajiki devastates central Vietnam. Catholics help residents

by Thanh Thao

The tropical depression has caused serious floods and landslides killing six with ten missing. More than 4,500 families have been affected in Hà Tĩnh and Quảng Bình provinces. Redemptorist Fathers responded to the appeal of the local Caritas. Volunteers hand out basic necessities in Hương Khê and Bố Trạch districts.

 

Hanoi (AsiaNews) – Catholic volunteers are involved in relief operations and assistance in central Vietnam, hit by violent tropical depression a few days ago.

On 3 September, typhoon Kajiki first hit an area between the provinces of Thừa Thiên-Huế and Quảng Nam, then moved north-east, towards the sea. Whilst weakening, the storm dumped up to 530 mm of rain in three days, causing severe flooding and landslides.

The Central Steering Committee on Natural Disaster Prevention said that the weather caused the death of six people with another ten still missing.

Three people lost their lives in Ha Tĩnh province; one person is dead and one is missing in Quảng Bình; a resident in Thừa Thiên-Huế was swept away by flood waters; three people are missing in Quảng Nam; the toll is one dead and five missing in Nghệ An province after a boat sank.

In total, some 15,000 homes have been flooded forcing the authorities to evacuate over 3,700 people. Currently, more than 4,500 families have been affected by the flooding in Hà Tĩnh and Quảng Bình provinces, which together constitute of the Diocese of Hà Tĩnh.

The head of the local Caritas, Fr Jean-Baptiste Nguyễn Huy Tuấn, called on social organisations, residents and businesses to help people in need.

The Truyền thông Tin Mừng Cho Người Nghèo (Evangelical Communication Group for the Poor of Saigon Redemptorists or GNsP) was among the first to respond. They brought basic necessities to Tri Bản parish, Hương Khê district (Hà Tĩnh), on the border between the two provinces.

Here volunteers are monitoring another ongoing emergency – the Hố Hô Hydroelectricity dam, located on Ngàn Sâu River. To build the plant, the authorities destroyed 1,000 hectares of forest. But every year, during the rainy season, it has to release huge amounts of water onto the surrounding land.

In the past few days, heavy rains have flooded more 3,000 homes in 18 municipalities in the district.

GNsP is working with local groups and residents to reach flood victims in a timely manner. Volunteers pray and urge more people to join their social and assistance programmes.

Yesterday, GNsP staff also sent some material to Bố Trạch district (Quảng Bình) where people urgently need clean water.

The local groundwater has been contaminated for some time and flooding destroyed one of the two wells built for the local parish priest, Fr Joseph Nguyễn Xuân Vinh.

The only working well is located two kilometres from the church. However, it will only be enough for the rainy season and not last the summer.

(Photo credit: Truyền thông Tin Mừng Cho Người Nghèo).

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