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2020/07/08

【Emergency Assistance for July 2020 Heavy Rain】 Civic Force Provides Medical Assistance and Relief Items to Stranded Areas in Kumamoto

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"SOS 120 Stranded"

On July 5, the SOS message in white letters was seen written on the playground at Konose Nursery School in Kuma Village, Kumamoto from the sky.

Civic Force's joint emergency team, ARROWS (Airborne Rescue and Relief Operations With Search) was setting up a new evacuation center and transporting relief items in Hitoyoshi when the team was able to make a contact with an evacuee at Konose Nursery School. The team found out that around 70 evacuees were stranded at the nursery school with little food and people were experiencing poor physical conditions.

In the early morning of July 7, ARROWS' medical team headed to the nursery school on foot because the isolated area was not reachable by car due to landslides. After arriving at the nursery school before noon, the team distributed hygiene items and two-days worth of food including beverages, ready-made foods, rice, and snacks. The Self Defense Force assisted ARROWS in transporting the relief items.

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"We were very worried because we were isolated"

Four doctors and nurses examined 50 evacuees and prescribed medicines as needed. One of the evaucees needed immediate medical attention and was transferred to a nearby ambulance by foot.

The evacuees told the ARROWS doctor, "We didn't know how long we'd be isolated. We were very worried," "The water came up high very fast. It was scary," and "I got injured on the way here." It is important for the medical team to understand the extent of the damage and needs of affected people and provide physical/mental health support.

Emergency Relief Items for Victims at Home

On July 7, ARROWS also distributed relief items including water, food, and diapers to an elderly welfare center in another stranded area in Kuma Village.

Most of the access roads to this area was cut off and a local volunteer guided ARROWS through the area. 80 evacuees at the elderly welfare center were flooded at home and ARROWS conducted a needs assessment. The team also provided food items to 150 victims (70 households) in nearby neighborhoods staying at home.

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ARROWS continues to provide evacuation center management and relief item distribution.

Today, the team plans to observe from the air and reach stranded areas via helicopters to deliver food items and medical assistance.

Our assistance activities are made possible by your generous support. You can donate through our page on GlobalGiving to help the victims of this disaster. Thank you for your continuing support.