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Abu Dhabi rallies behind Kerala flood victims

Corporates, community groups and inviduals join hands to help people in southern Indian state

  • Members of The Malayali Mums Middle East (MMME) Facebook group packing relief materialImage Credit: Supplied
  • Helping hands. Universal Hospital staff at a collection pointImage Credit: Supplied
  • Pitching in. Students of Abu Dhabi Indian School pose with relief itemsImage Credit: Supplied
XPRESS

Abu Dhabi: Corporates, organisations and individuals in Abu Dhabi have come together in solidarity with the victims of the massive flooding in Kerala which has left over 350 dead and rendered nearly 800,000 homeless.

As the UAE government calls on citizens, expats to pitch in with the relief efforts, several entities and community support groups have rallied behind the flood victims.

Dh10m
is what Indian tycoons have pitched in through Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation

Abu Dhabi’s Universal Hospital has set up collection points on all their three premises where people can drop off relief supplies like packaged food items, clothes, blankets, candles, life jackets and toiletries. “The response has been staggering with people from different nationalities donating for this cause,” said Dr Shabeer Nellikode, managing director and founder of Universal Hospital.

Women power

The Malayali Mums Middle East (MMME), an active Facebook group with more than 30,000 members, has also been working tirelessly to supply relief items to people displaced by the flood, regarded as the worst in more than a century.

“So far we have sent over 10,000kg of supplies by sea and air,” said Neethi Prajith of MMME Abu Dhabi. “As many as 60 MMME volunteers went door to door collecting the relief material from various parts of the UAE before it was shipped by ABC Cargo.”

Similarly, the Indian Ladies Association (ILA) has launched a drive to collect feminine hygiene products like santiary pads for women. “As women we can well imagine what those women must be going through in these testing times,” said Anu Chouraria, President of ILA.

Collection drive

Not to be left behind, 11th and 12th graders from Abu Dhabi Indian School Muroor have also launched a flood relief campaign to collect essential items for the victims. “The idea was initiated by our head boy Ahmed Hashim and the collection was done at house of another 12th grader Advait Nair. All students contributed generously,” said coordinator Shreyash Sridhar a 12th grader who hails from Tamil Nadu. “We were greatly inspired by the UAE government’s actions to help Kerala and have received tremendous support from our principal and school management as well,” he said.

357
people have died in the Kerala floods so far

A total of Dh10 million has been collected by the Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation through UAE-based Indian tycoons and businesses for Kerala flood victims, a few hours only after the Foundation had launched its relief campaign

National emergency committee

Earlier, the President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan instructed the formation of a national emergency committee to provide assistance to the people affected by flash floods in the south Indian state of Kerala.

According to the President’s instructions, the committee will be chaired by the Emirates Red Crescent (ERC) and include representatives from the UAE’s humanitarian organisations.

The committee will also seek the help of prominent Indian expatriates in UAE.

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