The Sumatra Quake

A quick thank you to those from this forum who have sent me an email to ask if all of us at Merdeka Coffee are OK. We are in Java, so quite some distance from the epi-center off the coast of NW Sumatra. Obviously the devastation in the Aceh province is immense. Indonesian TV (which is not sh to show live feeds) has been showing really gruesome footage of the bodies and destruction around the area. Up to 80% of Banda Aceh (the provincial capital) has been destroyed.

From a coffee point of view, I have talked to all our partners in the area and it seems that the plantation areas up n the highlands have been untouched. There was fortunatley no loss of life up there- although this does not make the death and destruction on the lowlands any easier to accept.

Although South East Asia is a long way away for many of you, I challenge you to help the victims not only in Indonesia, but also in the 10 other countries directly effected by this disaster. Please donate to your local red cross/red crescent or other local organisation. To help out as directly as possible you could make a donation to the Australian Red Cross, who seem to be in the best position to help out all the countries effected by this tragedy. ... ations.asp (it is a secure site)

Thanks again for everyones concern
Glad you and yours are all ok dude. One of my collegues, parents were in Sri Lanka when it happened, luckily for them they were on a mountain excursion that day, but their hotel was hit by it, and I know they lost some local friends.
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Thanks Quink- really it is a disaster of such a magnitude that it has touched people outside the region in a way that many would not have believed possible. I know the people here in Indonesia are amazed at the out-pouring of generousity from countries as far away as Western Africa and South America. A tragedy indeed but it seems to be bringing out the best in humanity in the relief effort.