Sunday, Oct 22nd

Last updateWed, 11 Nov 2015 11am

Tuesday, 30 December 2014 00:00

Great Love to Flood Victims in Maran, Pahang

Written by  Cecilia Chen, Maran / Translated by Tan Heang Shin

The victims showed their gratitude when volunteers distributed the material aid and cash relief with both hands. [Photograph by Oh Bee Choo]

The number of flood victims in Malaysia had risen to above 220,000; and Maran was one of the worst hit areas. On December 27, Sio Kee Hong, Deputy CEO of Tzu Chi KL & Selangor, and Low Guan Huatt, Deputy Director of Tzu Chi Klang, and two volunteers departed for Kuantan Liaison Office to discuss relief efforts for Maran. They only arrived at midnight December 28 as they had to take a longer route due to the flood.


 
As at December 28, more than 29,000 victims from over 7,700 families in Pahang had been evacuated to the 235 relief centres set up by the government. On December 28, upon receiving instructions from Tzu Chi KL & Selangor, Tzu Chi Kuantan Liaison Office called for volunteers to distribute aid in affected areas. Within two hours, 40 volunteers had come forward to offer assistance.
 
Accompanied by village chief and villagers
 
In Maran district, almost every house was covered in mud, and floodwaters had damaged furniture and electrical appliances. The Maran village chief, who accompanied volunteers on the door-to-door distribution, had also arranged for three villagers to supervise the aid distribution to ensure no one was left out.
 
Volunteers could only convey Master Cheng Yen’s message outside the houses. When they offered the cash relief and material aid with great respect, it spread warmth to the recipients. Zaleha, a flood victim, recalled being lost seeing the rising floodwaters. She felt grateful to Tzu Chi for the comfort, material aid and the Master’s blessings from Taiwan even though they do not know each other.
 
Zhang Guan You, another flood victim, was alone with his wife as all his children work away from home. He never expected the flood to reach his home as it had never happened before. Due to the rapidly rising floodwaters that reached almost 5m, he had to carry his wife and run for their lives. Hence, he could not salvage any valuables.
 
“I did not expect cash relief to be disseminated to the victims by any organizations,” said Guan You, who felt grateful to Tzu Chi as he could use the money to buy some daily necessities. He also agreed that the cycle of kindness should be created and had thus become a monthly donating member without hesitation when approached by volunteers. He hopes to contribute in a small way to society.
 
Inspiring more love and kindness
 
Upon hearing from the volunteers how Tzu Chi donations are being collected, shop owner Labiati, returned the goodies bag and cash relief she received to volunteers for distribution to the more needy victims. However, she chose to keep the letter from the Master. When volunteers shared with Labiati on how small contributions, when accumulated, can help others, she and her assistant immediately signed up as donating members.
 
Nora Zian said chokingly that she was deeply touched by the warmth and comfort offered by Tzu Chi volunteers. She could feel their sincerity and empathy.
 
Volunteer Ng Man Kai treasured the opportunity to be part of the relief team as he was able to feel the pain of the flood victims personally and hence cherished his blessings. It was particularly moving to see the faces of worried and upset victims turning into a smile after being comforted by the volunteers. Although physically tired, he felt extremely meaningful to be able to help the flood victims.
 
Huang Xiao Min had joined the relief efforts for the first time. Initially, he was rather hesitant when invited by volunteers to participate as he feared he could not juggle the busy schedules with his career and children’s education. However, he later decided to take the first step towards giving of himself.
 
He was very impressed with the flood victims, who had joined in Tzu Chi’s relief efforts on the spot, as they were touched by the volunteers. He could truly feel the power of loving- kindness. He never regretted giving up his entire day and energy for the relief efforts. Instead, he felt it was all worthwhile.
 
 
Volunteers made house-to-house visits in Maran. A total of 118 families (544 people) had benefitted from the distribution. Due to incessant rain that whole day, some areas were still flooded and floodwaters had reached the alert level. Volunteers had no option but to return to the Liaison Office. The umbrella and hot ginger tea from the local volunteers had warmed everyone’s heart.
 
 
Upon arriving in Maran, Tzu Chi volunteers were briefed on the details and precautions during aid distribution. [Photograph by Oh Bee Choo]   Flood victims moved out the furniture exposed to floodwaters for drying. [Photograph by Oh Bee Choo]

Upon arriving in Maran, Tzu Chi volunteers were briefed on the details and precautions during aid distribution. [Photograph by Oh Bee Choo]
 
Flood victims moved out the furniture exposed to floodwaters for drying. [Photograph by Oh Bee Choo]
 
Flood victim, Zaleha, was restless when the floodwaters rushed into her house. She was very touched by Tzu Chi’s aid and Master’s blessings. [Photograph by Oh Bee Choo]   When volunteers promoted the call for one million donating members, flood victim, Zhang Guan You, immediately signed up hoping to help others. [Photograph by Oh Bee Choo]

Flood victim, Zaleha, was restless when the floodwaters rushed into her house. She was very touched by Tzu Chi’s aid and Master’s blessings. [Photograph by Oh Bee Choo]
 
When volunteers promoted the call for one million donating members, flood victim, Zhang Guan You, immediately signed up hoping to help others. [Photograph by Oh Bee Choo]