Cyclone Pam brought winds of up to 170mph and torrential rain to Vanuatu last week leaving a trail of devastation in its wake
Following the severe tropical storm Cyclone Pam that devastated Vanuatu last week, more images continue to emerge of the destruction that’s been left behind.
Winds of up to 170mph and torrential rain hit the area on 13 March, causing immense damage to the communities throughout the islands.
A popular cruising destination, many sailors who have visited the area are now asking how they can best help the islanders trying to rebuild their lives.
In a statement on Facebook, the World Cruising Club said: “Already many of our round-the-world sailors have been in contact to ask what they can do to help. Knowing the vital importance of getting tourist spending back into the economy, we have launched an appeal amongst our sailors to support rebuilding marine tourism and community facilities in Port Resolution, Port Vila and elsewhere in Vanuatu.
“Please contact Andrew Bishop at World Cruising Club in Cowes if you would like to help rebuild lives in these remote communities.”
Images from UNICEF and Medical Sailing Ministries (MSM) show a snapshot of the damage that has been caused throughout the islands.
Sailor and MSM member Robert Latimer, who was attending a dental conference in Port Vila when the storm struck, said: “It was a case of shock, relief and a sense of disbelief at the widespread destruction resulting from Tropical Cyclone Pam.
“The reality of assessing the losses and starting again, and in some cases dealing with the violent and tragic loss of family members is hitting home.
“Communications down all over the country, along with roads and so much more infrastructure.”
Funds pledged by World ARC sailors have already reached more than $7,000 plus a further $10,000 from World Cruising Club.
The first of this financial aid is starting to get to staff at Yachting World Port Vila so they can begin rebuilding their homes.
News from Port Resolution on Tanna is sparse with contacts in Port Vila reporting that they don’t expect communications to be working for days
Elsie from Yachting World said: “Our 34 moorings are not insured, neither would anyone insure the Natangura built Waterfront. Our 52 Staff and families have all had their roofs blown off – and their whole homes blown away; they have nowhere to live, and no food, and we are trying to get them cooking materials to boil their water. Help starts at home and for our 52 staff the situation is dire, and we need help, immediate help.”
Other sailing organisation such as Sea Mercy are preparing to send a disaster relief fleet to provide care for the less populated and remote islands.