Timely relief and aid for flood victims in Baling, Kedah

 

Inner Wheel Club of Alor Setar

8 July 2022

 

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On Monday  4 July 2022, torrential downpour  saw several villages in the Baling District (in Kedah, the home state of Inner Wheel Club of Alor Setar  [IWC AS]) being quickly submerged within a few hours. Waves of muddy water and fallen trees that were swept down from a nearby hill, resulted in more than 85 homes being completely destroyed. Many victims gave accounts of nightmarish experiences, including, “I thought I was going to die”, and “This is the first time my house was completely under water. We could not save anything”.  At least four people, including a pregnant woman, lost their lives and hundreds of others had to be evacuated, in what is possibly the worst floods to have hit this area.

 

Responding quickly to the widespread devastation, the Kedah State government declared a state of emergency in areas that were critically affected. The flood relief authorities reached out to many agencies and as soon as IWC AS received the appeal for help, the Club sprang into action.

 

The Club received heart-warming response to IWC AS’ request for monetary donations from members and friends and a tidy sum was soon collected. President Tunku  Zamharir and Past President Tunku Munirah bought the  much needed items, like milk powder, diapers, sanitary towels, rice, under-clothing, etc., and on the morning of 8 July 2022, left for Baling in a four-wheel drive, laden with the necessities.

 

The scene that greeted the IWC AS team in Baling was one of utter chaos and devastation. The Flood Relief Agency there helped to transfer the essential items to a collection point. Tunku Zamharir said that it was really hard to describe what she saw and she could not imagine what the people must be going through.  A feeling of extreme sadness and despair enveloped the two members as they stood by and witnessed the grateful flood victims help themselves to what they needed.

 

IWC AS thanks members and friends for their magnanimity  which made the beginning of the Club’s WORK WONDERS journey possible. It was truly a most meaningful project for the 2022-2023 term and the Club is grateful to have played its part. Although it must be really hard to have any semblance of normalcy after this catastrophe, it is the Club’s fervent hope that God gives the people of Baling  the strength to pick up what little is left, if at all any, and move on.

 

~ Shantha Pillai