August has been a rude awakening for the staff of our charity. Most of us are spending our first rainy season in Banaba and had no idea how quickly the rivers could rise.
There's a small creek behind our house that we can usually barely see from our roof. When we woke up on the morning of August 6th, we were gob-smacked to see the "small creek" full of fast flowing, brown water. We could see it clearly from the upstairs bedrooms.
Overnight, our creek turned into a raging torrent. All the rivers in Banaba rose as quickly as our creek did and it wasn't because of a typhoon - they rose after just a few hours of heavy rain. Luckily, on the 6th it stopped raining at 10 am and the river reached a maximum height of 15.5 meters - about 51 feet.
Evacuations start at 16 meters. That means we were only half a meter - a foot and a half - from the first flood evacuation of the year.
For families who live by the river, the floodwaters sometimes rise too quickly for them to get to safety, and when that happens they rely on rescue team leaders like Romeo. But Romeo can only rescue trapped residents because donors around the world gave the funds we needed to build his boat. There are dozens of communities who don't yet have a single rescue boat - and we need to equip them!
Last week we delivered another boat, and the community was incredibly grateful. We hope to deliver more boats as soon as possible - and you can help us get there by fundraising! What's more, thanks to GlobalGiving, your fundraising efforts could win you fabulous prizes!
From September 1st to 30th, all fundraisers who raise more than $500 for a GlobalGiving project will be entered in a raffle for prizes ranging from a flip cam to airline tickets. There are also financial awards for the project with the most fundraisers! That makes September a great month to cycle, bake, or walk for rescue boats in Banaba! If you'd like help planning your fundraising efforts you can visit www.IDVolunteers.org/fundaise-idv or email Emma@IDVolunteers.org.
Once you've decided how much you'd like to raise and how you want to raise it you can create your fundraising page here. Don't forget to add our project as the beneficiary of your efforts once you've created your page! Again, if you have any questions please email Emma@IDVolunteers.org. Thanks so much, and our very warmest regards from Banaba!
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