February 2, 2012 Flood Update
February 1, 2012
David Morrison - Bangula, Malawi:
We have distributed more food to the 448 families in Bangula who lost their homes a couple of weeks ago. We gave each family 1 x 50 kg maize, 5 kgs beans, and 1 2m x 2m cloth (zitenji).
We served two groups yesterday and finished the 3rd group this morning. It went as peaceful as it could be. Miraculously calm. Thanks for all your prayers. We had the police with us – that’s just standard procedure for us right now – but they were not needed. We addressed the crowd before distribution, pointing them to Jesus Christ (our only Savior) and our Heavenly Father who provides for us and to whom we can turn in times of trouble. We also gave thanks to the donors in Canada who have made this food possible.
[Tired and hungry]
[Village Chiefs identify carefully each person called to ensure there is no cheating]
[Woman receives food while others patiently wait for their name]
[Women with their young children waiting for distribution]
We are all tired. Its hard work participating in distribution. We’ll take some time to regroup and then continue with the next target group. Hunger right now is very widespread. We are very concerned for the people who live on Nchalo Island.
The military left Bangula with their boats. Water levels receded to a point where it was too difficult for the boats to manouver across. The Army helicopter was flying emergency supplies across the river again yesterday, but not today. The displaced people in the camps are still in Bangula, but there is word that they will be moved back soon. I’m not sure how.
We’ve had a wonderful sunny day. The ground is drying out. We expect some rain in the next couple of days though.
[Elderly man secures maize to the back of his bicycle while grandson poses for the photographer]
[Elderly woman among those who lost her home]
[Man with son to follow]
[Mother with child considering best method to carry the food home]
[Scavaging the lone kernals that have fallen upon the path from bags of maize]
Praise the Lord – crops are growing very well right now, thanks to all the rain!
January 27, 2012
David Morisson - Bangula, Malawi:
We are going to be providing for the food needs of the displaced Malawians who are now taking refuge at two camps on this side of the Shire River. We met with the District Commissioner yesterday afternoon before he re-boarded the army helicopter to continue surveillance and distributing some emergency food to the victims on the other side of the river. He said all efforts and resources right now are focused over on the other side of Makhanga where villages are under water and there is no way of getting to them except by helicopter. Roads are washed out.
The military continues to rescue people by boat. As of yesterday, there were over 300 at the Bangula camp. We are going to see what’s going on at the other camp later which is down near the home of TA Mbenje, near Sorgin. We have donated 6 large pots for cooking so that there is a central kitchen. We have given flour, beans and soap. We will continue to monitor and give resources as they are available daily.
Yesterday the water level on the Shire River had gone down about 2-3 feet. That’s good news, but if it gets down too much more, it will force the stop of the rescue by the military. We’ve had a couple days rain free but now it is raining quite heavily again.
I am meeting with the officials from the DC’s office this afternoon to coordinate another food distribution to the 450 families who lost their homes in Bangula. The same group we fed on Tuesday. I’ve ordered 30,000 kgs of maize, and 3,600 kgs of beans in faith. We’ve also purchased 1,200 bars of soap for people in the displaced camps as well as for those who lost all in Bangula.
The government has done a great job mobilizing resources. The Bangula airfield currently has about 5 x 15 ton trucks that have offloaded sacks of care-packages for families stranded on the east side of the river. The Army helicopter is making continuous trips back and forth with the supplies. Makes for quite an exciting airfield.
We are getting reports from pastors in Nchalo that the Island is now at great risk. There is lots of flooding there. We are sending a scouting team there today. They will tour the island over the next couple of days and bring back a report and pictures.
This afternoon I’ll check in at the Bangula displaced camp, as well as with the military boat rescue at the wash-away.
[Uncomfortable in new surroundings]
Tomorrow we have Stewart Palmer, Executive Director at CURE Hospital in Blantyre who is donated Water-guard (water purification liquid) and rolls of cloth that we will cut in 2-3 meters lengths to give to the displaced who need clothing and covering for night.
We had an AMAZING service this morning in Bangula with pastors, bishops, leaders of churches from all over the Bangula area. The purpose was to “Seek first the Kingdom of Heaven”. There were at least 12 denominations represented – a first of its kind. Hundreds came. We met at the Hebron Ministries church building beside the airfield. What a morning. The Holy Spirit was there uniting hearts, hands, purpose. Wow! I’ll send some pictures when I have time to do so. We expect GREAT things. God likes unity!!!! REVIVAL COME TO THIS PLACE!
Last minute report: Cholera has shown itself at the camp in Bangula.