Chakra:
In the News

Bhaktivedanta Ashram joins relief effort

by Jahnava Nitai das
Bhaktivedanta Ashram

Posted December 30, 2004

We are all very saddened about the terrible devastation that has fallen on our brothers and sisters in South India and other parts of the world.

In response to the recent tsunami, the Bhaktivedanta Ashram is arranging a team of volunteers in Tamil Nadu to begin relief work to help the victims. Relief activities are expected to begin on Thursday, December 30.

Within several days an additional team of volunteers from our Orissa ashram will join them to provide further relief supplies including basic necessities for children and their families. Due to the long term effects of this disaster, the Bhaktivedanta Ashram plans to open a permanent relief center in Chennai so that relief activities can continue even after the immediate media attention dies down.

With our past experience of the Orissa cyclone in 1999 we know that such disasters lead to long-term difficulties for the victims that continue even after the relief organizations leave. With that in mind we are planning to maintain our relief center in Tamil Nadu permanently so that we can continue caring for those in need, especially the children who are affected by this disaster.

Reports indicate that the death toll in India has reached over 12,500 so far, with children accounting for up to a third of all the dead. Health reports state that the spread of disease could kill as many people in the coming weeks.

In such a situation with millions of displaced people suffering in need of food and clothing it seems an impossible task, but we should not let this discourage us. Let every one of us help in whatever little way we can. We humbly request all those with sufficient means to donate towards the tsunami relief work in Tamil Nadu. To donate by credit card you may visit our website and enter your donation through our secure server at www.foodrelief.org

Donations may also by sent by cheque made payable to "Bhaktivedanta International Charities" with the words 'Tamil Nadu Relief' in the memo field: Bhaktivedanta International Charities, P.O.Box 34153, Los Angeles, California, USA 90034.

I would like to again thank all of our friends and donors who have contributed towards our projects in the past and request everyone to offer whatever service they can, regardless of how small, to help this urgent cause.