$154k flood relief for India

More than $150,000 in donations was collected from people and the Government for relief work in flood-devastated Tamil Nadu, the Singapore Red Cross (SRC) said in a statement yesterday.

It had launched an urgent appeal for funds last week to help flood victims.

The disaster has claimed at least 280 lives across the southern coastal state. More than 100,000 people remain displaced.

A response team from SRC arrived in Chennai on Wednesday and, with its local partner, distributed more than 1,000 relief packs containing items such as towels, mosquito nets, blankets and bread.

The team went to the northern and north-eastern parts of Chennai for further ground assessments and relief activities yesterday. It returns to Singapore tomorrow.

"A steady stream of donors and volunteers has come forward to support our efforts," said SRC chief executive Benjamin William. "The devastation caused by the floods is quite extensive and we can do more to help.

"We would like to encourage the people of Singapore to continue to stand in solidarity with our friends in India who are affected."

The SRC has already contributed US$150,000 (S$211,433) worth of relief supplies to Tamil Nadu and the donations received so far will help offset the costs of the contribution. Should donations exceed this amount, the extra funds will be used to buy more items if they are needed.

The $154,000 raised so far includes US$75,000 from the Singapore Government.

Other organisations are also pitching in. Singaporean humanitarian non-governmental organisation Mercy Relief will distribute $10,000 worth of relief supplies today in Kulathumedu, an urban slum district in Chennai .

As for the status of Singaporeans in the city, a spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said: "Our Consulate-General in Chennai has contacted all the registered Singaporeans in Chennai and other parts of Tamil Nadu.

"Many of them have returned to Singapore and those still in Chennai or other parts of Tamil Nadu are safe."

This article was first published on December 12, 2015.
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