Hope rises from despair

26 December 2014 marked 10 years since the Boxing Day Tsunami, one of the most devastating natural disasters in living memory.
Jane survived the tsunami and hopes to study political science at university next year.

Hope rises from despair

26 December 2014 marked 10 years since the Boxing Day Tsunami, one of the most devastating natural disasters in living memory.

Among those who will pause to reflect is Jane, aged 18, from southern Thailand. She was just eight when the massive wave roared through her small fishing village.

“There was nothing left of my house,” Jane recalls. “Everything was gone with the water. I could not even remember where my house was situated.”

Jane says one of the most important things that helped her recover was support she received to return to school. “I was at my happiest,” Jane recalls of the day she received a school uniform and learning materials through World Vision.

It was early morning when a massive undersea earthquake triggered a series of tsunamis that charged across the Indian Ocean. The surging waves hit the shores of a dozen Asian countries. It is estimated that over 227,000 people lost their lives and some 1.7 million were displaced.

With the support of generous individuals and companies throughout Australia and globally, World Vision mounted its largest-ever relief response across Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Thailand, India and Myanmar.

The first priority was meeting basic survival needs. But within a short period of time construction and repair work began. In the months that followed, response programs focused on education, healthcare and livelihood support – and building hope for the future.

Jane says one of the most important things that helped her recover was support she received to return to school. “I was at my happiest,” Jane recalls of the day she received a school uniform and learning materials through World Vision.

Thanks to the amazing support of Jetstar staff and passengers through StarKids, World Vision is able to respond to emergencies throughout Asia and help children like Jane and their families get back on their feet.

Words: Margaret Spencer | Photo: Paiwan Benjakul, Jon Warren, Kevin Cook/World Vision