International aid organization Oxfam is preparing to send blankets and waterproof sheeting as part of a $260,000 aid package to the earthquake-hit area of Yushu County of southeastern Qinghai Province in northwest China.
The supplies will be sent from Oxfam’s stock held in warehouses in neighboring Chengdu in Sichuan Province, and Lanzhou in Gansu Province. Oxfam has offices in both cities. Qinghai borders Sichuan and Gansu, and the epicenter was near the southeastern border.
Oxfam is in contact with the local government of Qinghai and local non-governmental organizations assessing how it can best help.
“The freezing weather is a great challenge to survivors of the earthquake, many of whom are impoverished. Nighttime temperatures are dropping to freezing temperatures. Oxfam is planning to deliver thick blankets and waterproof sheeting to people whose homes have been damaged or destroyed by the earthquake,” said John Sayer, Director General of Oxfam Hong Kong.
An earthquake of a 7.1 magnitude hit Yushu County of southeastern Qinghai Province at 7:49 am local time on Wednesday, April 14, followed by a series of aftershocks. Official reports indicate that 617 people have been killed, 9,110 injured, and 313 people remain missing. The earthquake toppled 15,000 residential buildings, making about 100,000 people, mostly poor people, homeless.
Oxfam has previously assisted people in Qinghai in massive snowstorms in 1997 and again in 2008.