Rising tide of support
REBUILDING communities devas- tated by the Boxing Day tsunami may be a monumental task, but the Clarence Valley has continued to seek new ways it can offer a helping hand.
This week Yamba's Rotary tsu- nami appeal finished, raising close to $8000 for things like water pu- rification kits, items deemed es- sential to preserve the health of thousands of people displaced in temporary camps.
As the Rotary appeal came to an end, a new project got under- way with residents meeting to form a Coordinating Committee that would oversee a Valley-wide network of groups working togeth- er to continue the relief effort.
And while she might not have been able to make the public meetings or help out with the Ro- tary appeal, Phyl Pankhurst did what she could from the Mareeba Nursing Home in Maclean.
The 97-year-old decided to cro- chet a rug and send to the rav- aged communities in Aceh after hearing stories from the disasted unfold through radio broadcasts.
The late January meetings pro- moted by the Clarence Valley Council to form a fundraising Co- ordinating Committee elicited a number of good ideas.
They included a plan to hold an annual appeal to assist a sister region affected by the Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami.
Information nights to raise un- derstanding of the real needs of communities in Indonesia, Sri Lanka and other affected coun- tries were also proposed. After an effort which exceeded Rotary's ex- pectations, appeal coordinator Chris Muldoon was delighted at the amount raised.
Some of the money would be allocated through Rotary clubs in Sri Lanka and Indonesia to repair fishing nets and vessels so people could return to work.