Programs Tsunami Relief

ARC's Tsunami Relief

Where ARC Provided Tsunami Relief: Thailand, Sri Lanka, and Indonesia

People We Serve:
Those Displaced or Affected by the Indian Ocean Tsunami

On the morning of December 26, 2004, the Indian Ocean Tsunami battered the coasts of countries from Africa to Southeast Asia. Huge waves destroyed everything in their path. When it was over, nearly 280,000 people were dead, and more than 1.5 million were left homeless. It was the worst natural disaster in mordern memory.

Tidal waves washed entire villages out to sea. When the water rolled back, it left piles of debris strewn about the landscape.

With permanent operations long-established in Thailand, ARC was able to respond to the tsunami immediately. ARC began working in rural fishing villages north of Phuket. We first delivered medical supplies to hospitals and provided trauma support to survivors. After speaking with fishermen in the area who had lost their boats during the tsunami, ARC launched a project replacing hundreds of fishing boats. Many fishermen are again able to fish and support their families.

ARC also dispatched teams to impacted areas of Indonesia and Sri Lanka. In Indonesia, the ARC team partnered with other organizations to provide emergency medical support and vaccinate thousands of kids against the measles. In Sri Lanka, ARC initially provided tsunami survivors with emergency supplies. Today, ARC is rebuilding health facilities in Sri Lanka and is giving people small grants to restart businesses that were destroyed in the tsunami.

Read ARC's May 2005 Tsunami Relief Report

ARC's Tsunami Relief Activities:
  • Livelihoods Restoration Projects 
  • Distributions of Emergency Medical Supplies
  • Income Generation Projects 
  • Mass Vaccination Campaign
Operational Since:
December 28, 2005

In Thailand, ARC’s Country Director, Gary Dahl, arrived at the rural fishing villages north of Phuket and began relief operation within 48 hours of the tsunami. ARC teams also headed to Sri Lanka and Indonesia shortly after the tsunami to begin relief efforts in affected communities in those countries. ARC continues to work with tsunami survivors to help rebuild their lives.

In August 2005, ARC's Fishing Boat Project gained the approval of former presidents Bush and Clinton and received $1 million to continue building boats. By May 2006, ARC had already replaced 624 fishing boats for fishing families that lost a boat in the tsunami, allowing them to again support themselves.

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Building a Playground
Using only recycled materials, we were able to build a playground for the 5,000 kids living at Kiziba refugee camp in Rwanda.
On Famine
Daniel Wordsworth - American Refugee Committee President - talks about the situation in Somalia and how all of us can make a difference and help save lives.
Returning to Somalia
Nimco Ahmed shares her recent trip back Mogadishu her first time back to Somalia in 24 years
South Sudan
Rebuilding Health Care in South Sudan
Deb Ingersoll runs ARC’s Cash for Work Program in Haiti. She’s interviewed at ARC Headquarters.
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Simona Palenga, ARC Field Coordinator in Haiti, is interviewed at ARC HQ.
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Senior Director of Program Quality Monte Achenbach, is interviewed from the field in Haiti.
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ARC volunteer Dr. John Bordwell talks about the health situation of Congolese refugees in Rwanda.
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Somalia: Photos
photographs from Somalia
South Sudan: Photos
images from our efforts in southern Sudan
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