The effort began within hours after the tsunami struck on Dec. 26 of that year and involved simultaneous operations in five countries — Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Thailand, India, and Myanmar.
In December, World Vision will begin closing down its tsunami response coordination office in Singapore. Thanks to faithful donors, who supported us with prayers and giving, our work can be described as a resounding success.
The relief effort included infrastructure rehabilitation, livelihood recovery, child
well-being and education programs, health care, future disaster preparedness, and helping families establish their legal rights to land and aid. These activities were all part of a broader goal to reflect Christ's love and compassion to children and families left with nothing in the wake of one of the worst natural disasters in world history.
Among the highlights noted in the final report are the construction of more than 12,000 homes, 84 schools, 33 preschools, 27 health clinics, and 200 Child-Friendly Spaces — facilities where children can play, draw, sing, share their feelings, and begin to return to normalcy — as well as provision of 20 ambulances, hundreds of hospital beds, and assisting more than 40,000 people with support and vocational training to get them back into paid work.
The report also notes the provision of fishing boats, carpentry equipment, welding supplies, sewing machines, a mobile blood bank, a pathology laboratory, and the reconstruction of a fishing harbor.
Wynn Flaten, a World Vision tsunami program officer, says the scale of the disaster presented enormous challenges because of its rapid onset and the fact that the devastation was spread across vast, disconnected areas in several countries.
"People had to make decisions within 24 hours, when the context was not known so well," he says.
But despite the initial chaos, Flaten says, World Vision ultimately was able to deliver substantial assistance across a broad range of activities — largely because of the enormous generosity of donors.
Worldwide, World Vision raised nearly $380 million to fund tsunami relief operations, including $68 million from private donors in the United States. After fundraising and administrative commitments, about $347 million went directly to relief work in the field.
>> Praise God for the progress that has been made in the lives of those who were devastated by the tsunami — for livelihood restoration, renewed educational opportunity, access to health care, and more. Pray for God's blessing and care upon those who still face serious challenges in their lives, even three years after the disaster.
>> Donate to help provide emergency aid to survivors of disasters similar to the deadly 2004 Asia tsunami. Your gift can help create good news in places where the need is great.
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