As we come to the end of our first deployment to Taveuni Island, I would like to give an update on what we have been doing so far. When we arrived on 7th March we were overwhelmed with how much there was to do. The south end of the island suffered so much damage and so many people were without homes or living in homes so damaged that you really couldn’t call them a home. Food and water was and still is scarce.
The team- Kevin Hasemann, Bob Moore, Troy Tozer, Carl Smith, Gordon Blair and Wayne Carney- set about rebuilding homes, fixing water pumps, providing general first aid and anything else needed by the locals.
Throughout it all there were smiles all around- especially when the candy was brought out!
The team was able to fix the water pump at the health clinic near Vuna which had no water for 12 days. The main hospital is over an hour away if you have transport and if not almost impossible to make it there so this was a major thing for the village and local settlements. The team also donated medical supplies and medication to the nursing and the medical clinics located at Vuna and Waimaqera. These clinics service 3,000+ people in the area.
Both Gordon and Wayne spent many days transporting patients to the main hospital when their health situation became too much for the clinics. They even spent a day at the main hospital in Waiyevo delivering a course in using the Automatic External Defibrillator (AED) which is being donated by the Australian Company Physio-Control.
A big thanks to Bob, Kevin, Troy and Carl who were instrumental in the rebuilding of homes in the Waimeqera settlement as well as repairs to several of the schools in the area. Their job was not easy as most of the buildings were destroyed completely or very severely damaged. The hardest thing is getting building supplies. Most things have to be brought in by ferry from Suva. And the big issue is the cost of things. The team went to the local hardware store for a sledgehammer and it was almost $200 AUD! We have managed to buy some building supplies and tool kits but of course more are needed.
So as you can see the team has been hard at work. The second team will arrive on the Island on Friday, 18 March for another round of 10 days. Bob “The Builder” Moore has graciously donated more of his time and is staying through for the entire deployment from 7 March to 27 March. And many thanks to the other team members- Troy, Kevin, Gordon and Carl who have donated all of their clothes, tents and kit to the locals.
A big thank you to those that have donated funds and/or goods.
Please share this page with everyone you know and donate what you can to the cause. We have medical supplies and tools that have been donated but are still in Melbourne as we need to get a container organized to ship them over. All donations go to the people of Taveuni Island to help rebuild their homes and supply food and water.