Dec 27, 2014

An Unprecedented $13.5 Billion Raised During the Tsunami – Oxfam


New Delhi, 18 December 2014: Oxfam globally released a report today, “The Indian Ocean Tsunami: 10 Years On”, leading to the December 26th anniversary of the 2004 mega disaster.

The report looks at how the tsunami led to an unprecedented humanitarian response, raising an estimated $13.5 billion by the international community. Globally, Oxfam received $294 million, with over 90 percent coming from private donors. The funding was so rapid that many aid organizations closed their appeal within weeks. India received $70 million of this aid from Oxfam, the third largest following Indonesia and Sri Lanka.

Oxfam partnered with 29 organisations, helping more than 600,000 individuals in South India and Andaman and Nicobar Islands between 2004 and 2009. The response focused on rebuilding community resilience and disaster risk reduction after the initial phase. 56.8% of the money was spent in restoring livelihoods. Programmes like cash-for-work were initiated to reclaim canals, ponds and agricultural lands, desalinating wells, clearing debris and rebuilding shelters, restoring salt pans, training fishing communities in crab and seaweed farming and providing motorized boats.

Zubin Zaman, Oxfam India’s Deputy Director, Humanitarian and DRR says, “Since the tsunami, much has been done around disaster management in India. An advanced early warning system has been set up by the Government of India, the Disaster Management Act 2005 was enacted and states began to set up disaster management authorities. Moreover as an organization responding to humanitarian crisis, Oxfam India has grown its expertise and responded to 15 major disasters in India. Over 18 months we’ve built surge capacity in responding to 3 major humanitarian crises including Uttarakhand floods, Cyclone Phailin, Kashmir Floods, along with responding to conflicts in Assam and Muzaffarnagar simultaneously, which displaced hundreds of thousands in 2012 and 2013.”

The tsunami was a disaster at an unimaginable scale. It resulted in setting up an early warning system for coastlines along the Indian Ocean. Zaman adds,.”Policy changes and the right approach towards disaster management can make a big difference in reducing the impact of disasters. Effective investments on disaster risk reduction is the key because every new disaster pushes people into a spiral of poverty and slows economic growth.”

Humanitarian disasters are leading to $1.7 trillion in damages globally. The report highlights that needs are increasing faster than funds. It is not enough to build humanitarian capacity. There is an urgent need to address the causes for increasing climactic and man-made disasters or continue bearing this cost.

For further information, please contact:

Gunjan Jain, News and Media Manager, Oxfam India,
Mobile: +91 9811777387
Twitter: j_gunjan

About Oxfam India

Oxfam is a world-wide development organization that mobilizes the power of people against poverty. Oxfam India (OIN) works in partnership with 130 NGOs at the grassroots to address core causes of poverty and injustice in seven focus states of Assam, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand. In addition, last year OIN made humanitarian interventions during three natural disasters and two conflict zones in India. To know more read