Support the CWS appeal for the victims of Tropical Cyclone Gita in Tonga

16 February 2018


Most New Zealanders will have heard about the devastating effects of Tropical Cyclone Gita on Tonga and other parts of the Pacific. Our Church’s aid and development partner, Christian World Service, has launched an appeal to support the victims of the cyclone. Moderator of the Presbyterian Church, the Rt Rev Richard Dawson, has encouraged Presbyterian and Uniting congregations and church members to support this appeal.

In launching the appeal, CWS stated that the category four storm hit Tongatapu and ‘Eua on 12 February causing extensive damage. Power lines, trees and buildings were flattened by winds that reached 233 km/hour and heavy rain.

Authorities report that 70 percent of the population has been affected. Most families are salvaging what they can and carrying out immediate repairs. Surface flooding is expected to clear, but the threat of Dengue fever remains. Root crops and fruit trees have been badly damaged or destroyed. Tongans are working hard to clear roads and restore infrastructure including power and water supply.

The Tongan Government declared a state of emergency in anticipation of the cyclone and the National Emergency Management Office (NEMO) is coordinating the response. The New Zealand Government is helping to assess the situation and delivered the first relief supplies on 14 February.

Our Church has close relationships with many Pacific communities and offers prayerful support for all those affected by the cyclone in Tonga. As a sign of solidarity with our Pacific members and communities, you are invited to respond generously to the CWS appeal to enable aid to be distributed to those most affected by this natural disaster.

Read more information about the appeal here: “CWS appeals for Tonga after Cyclone Gita”. Donations can be made directly to CWS. Details about how to make a donation are on the Christian World Service website.

Phil King
Global Mission Coordinator

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