Helping avert a humanitarian disasterWritten by The Soham Baba Mission
In May 2009, Cyclone Aila released its fury in the state of West Bengal and in its trail left behind untold misery. Thousands lost their dear ones, homes and means of livelihood in a matter of days. A health calamity was waiting to happen as dead cattle and stagnant water threatened to become the nesting house of epidemics. This situation needed immediate action.
Hundreds from all over the world answered the call of His Holiness 1008 Sri Soham Baba and under His inspiring guidance, helped to avert a major humanitarian disaster.
Relief teams set up medical camps and temporary shelters. His Holiness guided the setting up of teams that would sanitize large areas of land (with bleaching powder) so as to prevent epidemics. As we arrived we found desperate people waiting in the rivers waving, hoping that we would come in their direction.
The volunteers - 285 over a period of one month - were assigned to several teams. One team stayed at the base camp where the mobile hospital tents were situated. Doctors from de West worked side by side with a medical team from India. Hundreds of men, women and children suffering from choleric diarrhea and fever were brought in by their families.
Most of them had travelled for days, because the The Soham Baba Mission camp was the only medical camp in that area. We had a supply of first class medication that made sure that all of our patients fully recovered from cholera.
Another team worked very hard to distribute all the goods. We donated tons of rice, thousands of liters of healthy fresh water and food like pumpkins and potatoes. The team travelled for days to reach remote areas where people were desperately waiting for help. Most people had not had clean drinking water for days. We felt that it was important to distribute food and water in a personal way.
Handing over the bottles of water in person and looking people in the eye made us aware of the importance of living for others. Other teams helped to sanitize large areas of land with bleaching powder to prevent epidemics. They also joined the villagers in rebuilding the dams and roads.
The Soham Baba Mission invites people from all over the world to join in these kinds of rescue missions and medical aid projects. This volunteer work is very rewarding. Our organization fully depends on volunteers who are willing to invest some time for the greater good.
- Field of volunteer work: Resilience and disaster preparedness
- Actions counted: 285