Kelud Emergency Response

Friday, March 21st, 2014

“Kelud is my best friend”

Thursday, February 13, 2014 , at around 22:50 pm , Volcano Kelud which lies on the border of Blitar Kediri – East Java , erupted. The impact of the eruption reached as far as Central Java and Yogyakarta some 200 km away, where thick clouds of ash fell down on cities and villages, including Surabaya , Solo, Yogyakarta , Semarang , and resulted in the closure of airports in the region around 3-5 days . In Yogyakarta , the Governor issued a decree on the state of emergency , in force for 7 days.

Together with the Community of United Volunteers Yogjakarta, JRS Indonesia took part in the emergency response in Kelud. The Community of United Volunteers Yogjakarta, comprised of a diverse group of individuals and students from Yogyakarta, work together in humanitarian disaster response, being present and providing support in the form of accompaniment, counseling activities or delivering urgently needed goods. JRS Indonesia provided funds to support the operational and expenditure of urgently need goods, also presence in the field for two days, on February 26-27, 2014. One concern of this community is to provide entertainment for children via games and activities aiming to help in dealing with trauma, grief and fear after the eruption.

“Kelud…..my best friend ……. Kelud… my best friend … “
Similarly chant slogans were made by Mr. Tejo the Clown, when inviting primary school children Kebonrejo I , District Kepung , Kediri to play along. Each slogan from Pak Tejon “Kelud” was answered by the children holding up their thumb “ my best friends”. The atmosphere was fun and around 120 children participated enthusiastically. Starting with a magic show, singing of songs and games children were invited to forget traumatic experiences for 1.5 hours. At the end toys and candy were distributed to the children.

Kebonrejo Village, District Kepung, Kediri, with a population of around 3000 residents lies within a radius of about 5 km of Volcano Kelud. By the time we entered the village, residents of this village had already returned to their houses from emergency shelters. Some people working to clean the houses were assisted by volunteers and soldiers. Houses here are open and often only covered with a tarp so that the fine ash could penetrate all corners of people’s living space. Particularly the damage in the agricultural sector was quite severe. This month is the month of the harvest but vegetables went bad after being covered by a thick layer of ash. The information we received in this village suggested that assistance in food, logistics, hygienic kits are adequate and sufficient. Assistance in the form of tiles and wooden houses, are also being brought by the truck while we were driving back to the post Yogja Volunteers United in the village of Gadungan , subdistrict Puncu, Kediri district, the village is about 15 km from the village of Kebonrejo.

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