Jakarta floods: an assessment and how you can help

Below is an update from Charles Ham, the country director of Hope Indonesia, an NGO that helps disaster victims. Hope has done a greatjob in Aceh for the Tsunami and in Yogjakarta for the esrthquake. Now, the house of many of its staff and its own clinic is underwater but they are still forging ahead to help.

Charles has provided a quick assessment of what is eeded to help the flood victims. As I write this the skies are cloudy, it has been raining lightly but it may pour at any moment, even as the flood waters have yet to receede.

Dear all,

Greetings from the water world of Jakarta.

Jakarta has been under water for the past two days. Many predict up to 40% of areas are flooded, in the city of over 10 million. Its surrounding satellite city of Tangerang and Bekasi is also experiencing the disaster. The water varies from 1 foot to 10 feet high in several areas as of the reports on February 3, 2007.

HOPE worldwide Indonesia’s clinic is also under water just like the houses of many of our staffs and volunteers. It is estimated that in a few hours more water are coming down from the mountains of West Java to the metropolitan areas. Many roads are flooded, while the remaining roads are experiencing super traffic. Many were stuck for 5 to 10 hours on the road.

In 1996 & 2002, the big flood also poured into the capital of Indonesia, and it took almost 1 months to decrease. HOPE worldwide Indonesia is trying to organize a disaster relief efforts. Below is our rapid assessment of the need:

  • Rubber Boats for evacuation to safer areas. Trucks are not able to access many areas. – Food & Water supplies. A big rush has taken place since yesterday in groceries stores, while the distribution channel will be cut off for at least another week.
  • Medical supplies & services. Skin problems, diarrhea, typhoid, cholera outbreak are possible. Not to mention the Dengue Fever has been rampant in the last few weeks in the city.
  • Home Repairs. As water to be reduced, there will be a need for home repairing for many families.

As for my family, we are lucky enough this year as our house is not flooded like in 2002. However, we are watchful for the possibilities of water to raise.

HOPE worldwide Indonesia has kept a small amount of medicines, food, and water while we are inventorying our capacity to act as many our staff and volunteers are in need of relief as well. Flooding presents a different challenge compared to earthquake and other natural disasters. Many volunteers have been active in helping their families and friends, but not enough at this point. Please pray for the rain to stop and we can start providing help.


Charles M. Ham

Country Director


HOPE worldwide – Indonesia Gedung Putera Lt 7, Jl. Gunung Sahari 39 Jakarta 10720 – Indonesia Telp: 62-21-600-9091, Fax: 62-21-601-0570, Cell: 62-816-183-4574 Email: Charles_Ham@hopeww.org, Website: Http://id.hopeww.org


9 thoughts on “Jakarta floods: an assessment and how you can help

  1. Bro, I hope you and loved ones are alright. I am not sure how we in Malaysia can help. As you know we don’t seem to be coping very well in Johor, where the worst floods in a hundred years are said to have hit. A newspaper known for collecting funds so that it can fill the paper with pictures of mock checks launched a fund for Johor after the return of the PM from a holiday in Perth, by which time about 100,000 families had lost their homes to the water. I see you have more experience in handling the floods but I also believe that the flood victims in Jakarta are better off because of such an experience. I hope you remain well and safe, and will try my best to spread the word about the good work you are doing in trying to help the victims.


  2. It’s fairy scary here. Electricity is cut in all area and we still got heavy rain from time to time. I don’t think this will end soon.

    PS: You may want to take a look at photos of flooded Kelapa Gading that I took on Saturday. Everything is still pretty much flooded all around and it’s not possible to get into kelapa gading by car.


  3. Unfortunately, this kind of thing – flooding and environmental crisis will be just a factor of life in Indonesia, especially Java, in coming decades.

    Public attitudes don’t help. According to the old standby, the ‘taxi driver’ poll, the floods are a ‘warning’ from the almighty to sinners and undilligent Muslims. (To be fair, they said the warning went for unfaithful Christians as well). Frighteningly, even some government scientists, if you get them at a quiet moment, will confess similar thoughts.

    The President even held a cabinet meeting last year to discuss how to cope with a public perception the natural disasters were a warning from the celestial sphere.

    Now the rains may have come from the heavens, but there’s a good chance the floods were created on a lower plane- by poor regulation and failure to build proper infrastructure. Thanks, Sutiyoso.

    With more than 120 million people – and growing – on this island and little environmental scenario planning, this weekend’s chaos is a harbinger of things to come. 😦 With reptilian thugs like Sutiyoso in charge,calling for a little divine help might not be such a bad idea after all.


  4. January 6 Updates

    Sixth Day of Jakarta Flood Disaster Relief went well. The water went up quiet high the night before, affecting more areas. We are still cut off from our office (which is on 7th floor safe from water), and created the crisis center in my house in Ancol, North Jakarta. 1,000 ready-to-eat meals were distributed (McDonalds and donated rice boxes) as well as 260 bread; Water, instant noodles, blankets, clothes, candles, flashlights were also distributed. Areas covered were Sunter, Tanjung Priok, Ciledug, East Jakarta, Kelapa Gading.

    One unit of “Vortex Voyager” portable water filter made the trip and was installed in Pulomas East Jakarta. The unit is capable of turning river water into mineral water at 2 liter per minute, providing an alternative drinking water up to 2,500 liter water per day.

    We also assembled 200 “HOPE First Aid Kit” that contains over-the-counter medicines for families; this is necessary for small wounds, fever, vitamins, diarrhea, skin infections, and coughs. Half were distributed right away. The plan is to assembled up to 700-800 of these kits.

    Yesterday 7 teams conducted SAR in Plumpang, Kelapa Gading, Sunter, East Jakarta, Bekasi 1,500 ready-to-eat meals were also distributed, mainly from McDonald’s and Breadbox.
    Friday morning, Singapore Airline will transport 1,000 lbs of humanitarian aid for the flood victims. We look forward for the assistance.

    Thank you for all the supports! Please keep the victims in your prayers as the risk has not decrease yet. We would not be surprised if the water will take up to 2 weeks to dry.


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