Ministry Workers Marooned by Severe Flooding in Orissa

June 30, 2008

A ministry supported by Christian Aid is located in the heart of the disaster area of Orissa State, India. Estimates are that nearly 700,000 people in the Balasore District have been stranded due to the heavy flooding caused by torrential rains.

Last week three major rivers began to swell and overflow in the district and even into adjoining areas. Only 4,000 people were able to be evacuated from the worst-hit areas of these 848 villages. "Our relief operation team visited a village situated in the extreme north of Balasore District. Nearly 700 people ran for their lives," reports D. B. Hrudaya, "as mud houses, goats, chickens and personal belongings were washed away by the rampant floods. Among the people was a helpless colony of lepers. Thankfully, they were able to be rescued by a struggling band of Christians from the village."

Nearly 25,000 people have been camping out on the slightly elevated National Highway 60. An OFU truck dispatched a load of green bamboo for makeshift shelters to the relief site at Rupsa, along the highway. They are also mobilizing baby food, drinking water, dry food, clothing, rice and firewood. "But the need is so huge," says Hrudaya. Gifts received during this crisis will be used for these kinds of necessities