‘Now I Have Somewhere to Live’: Indonesia Quake Relief Continues

New home

Jawanis, a 49-year-old widow who lost her arm in a farming accident, stands near the new home provided to her by CRS after an earthquake destroyed her house in Indonesia. Photo by CRS staff

As generous support pours in for Haiti, CRS is also continuing its response to a powerful quake that struck Indonesia in September 2009. CRS staffer Josephine Wijiastuti sends us this update about relief efforts six months after the quake:

Jawanis, 49 years old, is a widow who lives with her two sons and her mother. She is a farm laborer whose principal livelihood is collecting pinang (betel nut). Ten years ago, her arm was cut at the elbow in an accident with a rice-cutting machine; she lost the lower arm.

Jawanis received a cash grant to build her “pondok,” a small dwelling. She used the cash to purchase cement, wooden planks, metal sheeting, paint, plywood and labor; then she used materials salvaged from her quake-ruined home to complete the pondok. It took only 15 days to complete her pondok.

Destroyed home

Jawanis stands near her earthquake-destroyed house in Indonesia. Photo by CRS staff

“I stayed in tent after the earthquake as my house was flattened due to earthquake,” says Jawanis, “but now I have pondok I can live in.” As soon as the house was ready, Jawanis and her family moved in.

CRS has committed to helping 10,000 families build similar transitional shelters. As of early January 2010, almost 2500 households had been served.

Jawanis mentioned that CRS and its partner staff visited her family regularly and that gave useful feedback on how to make a good and safe pondok. “The process was quick. We received the cash grants on December 1, 2009 and this pondok is comfortable and safe,” says Mak Nian, Jawanis’ mother. “Thanks to God, I am so happy to receive CRS support for pondok.”

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2 Responses to “‘Now I Have Somewhere to Live’: Indonesia Quake Relief Continues”

  1. Debbie DeVoe Says:

    Congratulations Jawanis! And thanks for sharing this story Josephine :)

  2. Maria Josephine Wijiastuti Says:

    Thanks Debbie and Laura for following up this story:) Happy to share our project in West Sumatra. To date we have reached 9,867 total t-shelters either complete or in progress:)

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