May 13th, 2008
03:20 PM ET

Ghosts of loved ones, and fear this might happen again...

Editor’s note: World Vision is a Christian-based humanitarian organization dedicated to working with children, families, and their communities worldwide. Some of the aid workers dispatched to the region share their experiences helping the victims of the Myanmar Cyclone. Because of the inherent danger in Myanmar, World Vision is witholding their names.

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From World Vision aid worker

"I've met people who walked for days to get to Yangon from the Delta. They told stories of sleeping on the roadside, of bloated corpses floating on swollen rivers and of bodies strewn across the road. It had been days since they’ve had clean water to drink...

The travelers on foot told me about a 12-foot tidal wave that wiped out an entire village after hours of intense wind and rain...Disaster preparedness would have saved lives. World Vision deployed staff members to northern communities where the cyclone was first predicted to make landfall.

We were working with communities to prepare them for strong winds and heavy rain. Then the storm suddenly changed directions and headed south...

The people in this area had to escape by sea in small boats. I am told many drowned, unable to move through the violent waves fast enough...Many of us did not prepare our selves for the possibility that this storm could ruin our homes and steal innocent lives...The shock of losing loved ones, crops, livestock and homes can be deep and lasting.

I wonder if this will make people afraid to stay, afraid to sit with the ghosts of their loved ones and the fear that this might someday happen again."

How you can help

Filed under: Aid workers • Cyclone • Myanmar
soundoff (6 Responses)
  1. Dori in AZ

    I am immensely saddened by your great losses. We will do what we can to help, & pray that the Myanmar gov't allows aid to reach its people & animals while they can still be saved.

    Whether it's the tornadoes in the United States, this cyclone, the earthquake in China. . . we must remember that we are all on this small planet together. And, what happens hundreds or thousands of miles away impacts our lives, too.

    "Do small things with great love." Mother Teresa

    May 14, 2008 at 12:10 am |
  2. Annie Kate

    I can't even begin to imagine what these people have been through. Its horrific. I'm so glad there are organizations like World Vision that can help the victims – I hope that in addition to the short term help in getting clean water and food and shelter that long term help is provided to help get these people in safe homes and back to the routine of daily life. Thank you for all you do.

    Annie Kate
    Birmingham AL

    May 13, 2008 at 9:30 pm |
  3. Barbara-Dalton Ga

    Home is home, it houses all the memories good and bad it 's only
    natural that people want to go home asap after a disater. I hope these
    people are able to go back home and rebuild. My prayers are with these people as well as those in China. I just cannot understand
    the government being such an ass about accepting aid. Why don't they take the aid and distribute it wihout letting it be known to the people where it came from.

    May 13, 2008 at 6:01 pm |
  4. Mary Jean

    I can not understand man's inhumanity to man (especially the government of Burma). Thanks go to the aid workers and to the media who risk their lives to make a difference.

    May 13, 2008 at 5:50 pm |
  5. Rekha Joy Raman

    World vision aid worker: I appreciate your anonymous help for the torn people in the devastating cyclone. I wish I was there to help. I can only pray for people like you for your ardent support to the helpless. To them you are like the gods and goddesses heaven sent.
    Thank you so much and God bless.

    May 13, 2008 at 4:55 pm |
  6. Tammy, Berwick, LA

    I don't know. I have never lost everything to a storm or other natural disaster. I might consider it a sign to move on. But then again, I think I'd want to stay, rebuild, and continue in the area I love. Parts of New Orleans were destroyed by Katrina. And yet, it is the place I still call my comfort zone. It is still the place of happy childhood and adolescent memories. It is still the city whose doctors saved my life before I was born and again at 17 when I was not supposed to survive. No matter what happened, I could never give it up. Last weekend I celebrated my 40th birthday with my dad, stepmom, and nephew. Dad asked where I wanted to go. There was no other answer than New Orleans. I think the places that connect us to our past never leave no matter what Mum Nature does. I think it's up to us to make sure they come back stronger than ever. I pray the people of Burma can return home one day and rebuild what matters to them remembering the good more than the sadness. It's not easy. New Orleans can still make me cry when I think of the injustice people there endured and the loss of what was known. But the potential for future good memories is reason enough to help and hope and work for its continued survival. Here's wishing the same for those in Burma who have lost so much.

    May 13, 2008 at 4:16 pm |