Habitat helps Tsunami Victims - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Habitat helps Tsunami Victims

January 5, 2005

Americus -Hundreds of thousands were left homeless by the deadly earthquake and tsunamis that devastated Southeast Asia. Habitat for Humanity CEO, Paul Leonard explains "Their walls were torn down. Some of them are living in the temple. Some of them are living with friends. There's very little water. Food is scarce. They have only the clothes they had on their back."

In Sri Lanka, survivors are building makeshift shelters made mostly of aluminum. Here in South Georgia, Habitat for Humanity in Americus is building a model brick house that exemplifies the structures many survivors will soon be able to call home. "Where the houses have been destroyed, the foundations are still solid so our plan immediately is to go in and help those families build a one room shelter with a little veranda," says Leonard.

They'll later add rooms to those houses already belonging to Habitat families, but there are others. Leonard explains"We're making this a priority in terms of trying to strengthen our program in Asia pacific and to be supportive to those who have been so terribly damaged by this tsunami."

Conditions in some of the areas hit hardest by the tsunamis are similar to slum housing that can be seen in the Global Village. Most had little to start with, now they have nothing at all.

Leonard said "It would be hard to imagine a more difficult living circumstance," but with Habitat for Humanity busy in housing relief efforts after this deadly disaster, the living circumstances for many will soon improve.

Posted by jennifer.hulsey@walb.com at 6:36 PM.