On December 26, 2004, a powerful tsunami, triggered by a massive earthquake in the Indian Ocean, slammed into the coastline of Southeast Asia. The tsunami wave reached as high as 100 feet and took more than 280,000 lives and wiped out homes and villages in several countries, including Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, and Thailand.
Three weeks after the tsunami, Service International assessment teams arrived in Sri Lanka and quickly determined that SI could make a difference. SI's operations were launched in March, and in April the first volunteer teams arrived from the US to begin building permanent concrete block houses in the region. Displaced families, who lived in grass huts before the tsunami left them homeless, were now able to move into sturdy structures with interior plastered walls.
Fishermen who survived the tsunami lost their livelihoods as the giant wave swept away their boats and fishing gear--leaving hundreds without a way to obtain food, clothing, or shelter for themselves and their families. SI has been able to purchase new boats and equipment for many of the fishermen who had lost everything.
Even though it has been more than a year since the disaster, life in this region is still far from normal and many are still homeless. Volunteer work teams continue to travel to Sri Lanka to build homes and bring good news and help to the Sri Lankan people. All you need are willing hands, a caring heart, a passport, and roundtrip airfare. Call SI today to find out how you can extend your boundaries and enrich your life as you give to others across the world.