Mercy Corps team members are on the ground now and plan to provide urgently needed supplies after an earthquake killed more than 2,000 people.Donate now
UPDATE: Our response to the earthquake in Indonesia
More than 2,000 people have been killed in a 7.5 magnitude earthquake and resulting tsunami that hit the Indonesian island of Sulawesi on September 28. Tens of thousands are displaced and in desperate need of food, water and basic healthcare.
The needs on the ground are staggering, but we still don’t have a handle on the true scale of this tragedy. Damage to critical roads and infrastructure means that some affected communities are still waiting to receive support. People are trapped and the aid isn’t getting through.
Our team members are on the ground now to respond to the immediate needs of survivors of this disaster. Mercy Corps plans to provide essential supplies including water, food and hygiene kits.
"Some people are now receiving basic food items like rice, noodles and canned food, but this remains a small minority. The food situation in Palu remains dire, and with the market closed we’re even struggling to feed ourselves," says Genadi Aryawan, a Mercy Corps team member. "Makeshift camps have sprung up across the city and many lack adequate sanitation, creating a risk of disease. Some of the people I spoke with told me they would rather sleep under a sheet of plastic than risk going back inside. They are traumatized and scared to go home."
Donate now to our Humanitarian Response Fund to help families in Indonesia and others suffering in crisis around the world.
Mercy Corps has been working in Indonesia for nearly 20 years and our team on the ground are experts in disaster response. We are also still responding to the Lombok earthquake, which occurred in August and displaced 20,000 people.
We are committed to empowering people around the world to survive through crisis, build better lives and transform their communities for good. Recognized as a leader in delivering rapid, lifesaving aid to hard-hit communities, we have responded to almost every global emergency in the past 20 years, including the Nepal earthquakes (2015), Philippines typhoon (2013), the Japan earthquake and tsunami (2011), Horn of Africa drought and hunger crisis (2010) and Kashmir earthquake (2005). We were also one of the first responders to the Indian Ocean tsunami (2004) and Haiti earthquake (2010).
Life in Indonesia
About half of all Indonesians live on less than two dollars a day. Employment growth has been slower than population growth. Public services remain inadequate by middle-income standards, and health indicators are poor. The island is also one of the most disaster-prone nations in the world.
- Economic opportunity: Providing technical assistance, training and financial services to microfinance institutions throughout the country and helping spice farmers earn more income
- Health: Raising awareness and supporting mothers to practice and promote exclusive breastfeeding
- Water: Improving sanitation and hygiene in crowded urban areas with a mobile sludge removal service
- Disaster preparedness: Identifying and mapping areas at risk and helping those communities plan, train and practice how to respond when disasters occur
- Emergency response: Maintaining a response team ready to quickly deploy and provide immediate relief to survivors during the critical first months after a disaster strikes
Indonesia: Another busy day in the world's tenth-biggest city
I wasn't quite expecting to see as much of Jakarta as this. Today we met the Mercy Corps staff at their offices for a presentation of the various projects the organization is doing in Indonesia.
Indonesia: Not the typical sights of Jakarta
Today was an exhausting day. Our little group of Mercy Corps staff and supporters left the hotel early to drive out to West Jakarta where we toured an urban village, for lack of a better description.
Indonesia: Water tanks in Mentawai displacement camp, Indonesia
Bright orange water tanks, provided by Mercy Corps through a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, located behind the temporary shelters of a displacement camp in Indonesia's Mentawai Islands.
Indonesia: Inviting the rain
In their old villages — before the earthquake and tsunami hit Indonesia's Mentawai Islands last year — people never had trouble getting fresh water. Their homes were always located close to rivers, because they knew that water is of the utmost importance.
Indonesia: Boosting disaster resilience
If your family lived in a rickety shack on stilts and the waters were rising, you would hope your government had a plan. But if you were among the millions of poor people who inhabit some of the world’s most crowded and vulnerable Asian cities, there’s a good chance you’d be wrong.
Indonesia: Wholesale bank brings financial services to the poor
In Indonesia, millions of people are self-employed through small businesses. But only a small percentage of them have had access to the formal financial services that help people move permanently out of poverty.
Indonesia: Water pump for displaced families on the island of Sipora, Indonesia
The people living in Masokut were very enthusiastic about the installation of a hydraulic pump, which helps getting clean water easier for tsunami-affected families.
Indonesia: Water flows and greens grow
Thanks to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Mercy Corps´ hygiene promotion, livelihood, water and sanitation programs are improving living conditions for those living in displacement camps on Indonesia's Mentawai
Indonesia: Working with the World Bank in Jakarta to alleviate flooding and fight climate change
Flooding in Jakarta — Indonesia's capital and biggest city — is a yearly occurrence that destroys property and displaces families, particularly in poor areas.
Indonesia: Disaster preparedness training in Sungai Pisang
Pointing out tsunami evacuation routes on a map of Sungai Pisang, a village in disaster-prone South Padang, Indonesia.