relief after Nepal earthquake, 2015
materials for Utarakhand flood victims, 2013
for Gujurat earthquake victims, 2001
Through our global network of volunteers, the Art of Living and our partner organization, The International Association for Human Values (IAHV), has been able to respond swiftly to natural and man-made disasters in different parts of the world. As a result, today the two organizations have established themselves as vital providers of both short term and long term disaster rehabilitation programs in India and in many countries around the world.
When disaster strikes, our work starts by providing immediate material aid and care. These emergency services provide food, clothes, medicine and shelter. Doctors, counselors and other physical and mental health experts form an integrated part of these immediate relief efforts.
For survivors of disasters, who have experienced severe physical and emotional trauma, material help alone is not sufficient. Alleviating trauma and helping people to reclaim their lives is essential. Our Trauma Relief Programs teach participants how to process their emotions and stress through various breathing techniques and to shift their attention from past towards possibilities for a future.
True relief can happen only when disaster survivors are completely rehabilitated – physically and emotionally. To support communities in developing sustainable solutions, our global volunteers work in villages and with local communities, building homes, sanitation systems, roads, schools, vocational training centers and other necessary infrastructure.
In India alone, we have mobilized relief teams in all major disasters since 2001 (including Gujarat Earthquake 2001, Tsunami 2004, Uttarakhand 2013) and through our efforts brought relief to over 1,50,000 lives.
You can help us support our disaster relief initiatives by partnering with us.
“Until I did the breathing exercises (taught in the trauma relief workshop) my heart had not stopped pounding, not since the earthquake. Now at last I am at peace.” - Begum Azie, Resident Shaalkot village, Baramullah, Kashmir, October 20, 2005
A disaster relief operation is physically, mentally and emotionally challenging for both the relief-provider and the victim. There are only a few other situations where suffering is so starkly evident. Things are further complicated because in disaster hit areas:
There is a high risk of epidemic and contamination
Accessibility is usually broken because the roads are damaged and it becomes difficult to send relief teams and relief aid
Getting storage space to store the relief materials is difficult because of unavailability of clean and safe places
Bad terrain and rough weather conditions hamper relief operations
It is hard to communicate with base teams because connectivity and communication is often broken
Each disaster, whether natural or manmade, and its specific geographical location, poses it’s unique set of challenges
We follow a three-pronged strategy to execute disaster-relief projects. These include:
Providing immediate material aid and emergency services in the aftermath of disasters in the form of food, drinking water, clothes, medicine and shelter
Short-term disaster relief by providing emotional and material support and conducting trauma relief workshops to help victims address and overcome shock and trauma
Long-term rehabilitation by working with the communities to rebuild homes, roads, schools and other basic infrastructure
From extensive relief and rehabilitation work in tsunami-affected areas to earthquake relief operations in Gujarat, our volunteers have worked with compassion, commitment and care to address physical, emotional and material needs of disaster victims. Some of the work that we have done in the recent past includes:
Distributed relief material (food, medicine, tents, blankets, etc.) to 150,000 victims
Conducted more than 225 Trauma Relief Workshop benefitting 30,000 victims
More than 8000 volunteers worked in ground zero in 12 out of 13 major impacted districts of Nepal
110 truckloads of relief material distributed among the affected
90 trauma relief programs conducted for more than 10,000 people
Undertook repair and reconstruction of homes, provided solar lights, geysers and tin roofs
Conducted trauma relief programs that impacted 65% of residents in 31 villages
Distributed 8 tons of food grains, 3600 packets of biscuits, 50 kg of milk powder and 220 water filters as material relief
Organized 10 medical camps and built 143 homes
Conducted trauma relief programs for 25,000 adults and 800 children
Established an orphanage to serve 300 children
Built a new primary and higher secondary school in Nagapattinam
Provided Rs. 5 Crore in food, medical aid, clothing to 10 villages
Provided food aid to around 30,000 people
Distributed relief material worth Rs. 50 Lakhs
Built a model township of 124 homes, causeway, water tanks, drainage system, community hall, school, and a place of worship
Built 14 temporary schools that were fully functional 3 months after the earthquake
Please reach out to us to know more about our disaster relief projects and how we can partner to bring relief to the affected communities.