Cyclone Winston relief effort update

posted: 8:00 am - 7th March 2016

 07 March 2016

 Fiji remains in clean up and recovery mode after Cyclone Winston ravaged the island nation two weeks ago.

The most powerful storm recorded in the southern hemisphere, Winston’s category 5 tropical cyclone rating destroyed remote villages, wiping out crops and cutting lines of communication.

 Aid agencies are now preparing for the widespread health crisis, particularly in the low lying areas where thousands of Fiji’s people live, and are without fresh water supplies.  The death toll has risen to 42.

 Relief efforts to help those affected continue across New Zealand with the Fiji Community Association of Auckland running two drop off points for people to donate water, non perishable foods and clothing. 

 Vice preident Ratu Iso Soqosoqo says they are so grateful to people for their kindness and generosity.  “We are accepting goods and will put them into the container and send them to Fiji.  We sent one container on Saturday and this one will go soon too.”  Mr Soqosoqo says while they are taking goods people can also donate to the NZ Red Cross.

 Josephine Bartley, NZ Red Cross Pacific Community Engagement officer says people can still donate to the Winston Relief Fund.  Ms Bartley says the radio-thon on Radio531pi at the weekend really showed the overwhelming support all Pacific communities feel for Fiji.   She says it was an old school method but proved the spirit of generosity is high in Pacific communities.  “There’s been so much support from all over, it really is amazing.”

Drop off points for the containers are south Auckland, City Impact Church, 385 Mt Wellington Highway, Mt Wellington and west Auckland, Church Unlimited, 3 Te Atatu Road, Glendene. For more information contact our Regional Advisor Yara Richmond 027 600 3206

Donations can be deposited into the NZ Red Cross Cyclone Winston Relief Fund  12 3192 0025998 00