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Serving Sri Lanka

This web log is a news and views blog. The primary aim is to provide an avenue for the expression and collection of ideas on sustainable, fair, and just, grassroot level development. Some of the topics that the blog will specifically address are: poverty reduction, rural development, educational issues, social empowerment, post-Tsunami relief and reconstruction, livelihood development, environmental conservation and bio-diversity. 

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Tsunami aid leaves port

Herald Sun: 21/06/2005"

A CONTAINER load of aid from Victorian hospitals and school children has finally reached tsunami victims after being stuck on a Sri Lankan wharf for three months.

The school and medical supplies were released from Colombo port on Friday after Sri Lankan officials agreed not to impose import taxes on the emergency supplies.

Bacchus Marsh volunteers Hugh Esler and his wife Ingrid helped organise some of the material and thanked the Australian High Commission in Colombo helping to have Sri Lankan import taxes waived and the container released.

Some medical supplies were spoiled because of the delay but Mr Esler said other donations, including 2000 back-to-school kits and water bottles, would help desperate schools and hospitals.

"The Dharmavinjaya Foundation (distributing the aid) advised us that this is the largest consignment they have received and had to move the load to their premises at night as some roads in Colombo had to be closed for the truck to get through," Mr Esler said.

"They will be distributing the aid in smaller trucks to tsunami-effected schools along the southwest coast and through Galle."

Mr Esler said Bacchus Marsh Hospital recently donated equipment including an operating table and the Alfred hospital sent two dialysis machines in another container bound for Sri Lanka.

Anyone wishing to assist or donate can contact Hugh and Ingrid Esler at hook@bigpond.net.au

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