IRC Relief Team Ferries Aid by Boats to Forsaken Township in Myanmar
An International Rescue Committee (IRC) volunteer relief team set out for this forsaken area before dawn on Sunday after receiving word that only a few small aid distributions by local groups had reached survivors there.
“On our way, we saw many rotting bodies and animal carcasses in the river and in the bushes,” reported Aung Htun U, an IRC volunteer who took part in the mission. “The sight of these floating bodies and the smell is too terrible for us to describe.”
Once in Dedaye town, the team loaded emergency supplies onto boats.
“From Dedaye, it took us one and a half hours to reach Kyonemhaw. We traveled on two boats, 18 feet long and three feet wide, as they are able to crisscross the narrow river lanes,” described Aung. “We eventually arrived in the village and unloaded our supplies at the monastery, where hundreds of people had gathered to receive donations.”
The IRC team worked with monks and volunteers from the community to distribute medicine, food, shoes, clothes and containers of water.
“The villagers are poor rice paddy farmers and they were so eager to receive help – anything at all,” says Aung. “They are really struggling.”
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