CRSM to the rescue again
No dampened zeal when floods hit
Critics unreasonably pan BN and MCA of neglecting states ruled by the Opposition. Far from the truth, MCA does not sideline development to Pakatan-run states but extends assistance to them. During the late Dec 2016 to early Jan 2017 floods which struck Kelantan, the Crisis Relief Squad of MCA (CRSM) wasted no time in immediately dispatching its personnel from the West Coast to alleviate the burden of multiracial villagers affected by the rising waters.
Although the torrents this round were not as severe as those from Dec 2014 to Jan 2015, CRSM’s spirit and zeal for public service rose above self-need. With a few major roads destroyed by the disaster, and rivers overflowing their banks, CRSM spared no effort in carefully treading through knee-to-waste-high water levels, even navigating sampan and light motorboats through what-used-to-be land roads, to ensure victims were safely evacuated to higher and dry grounds or food supplies delivered to affected areas.
The footprints of the volunteers extended from Pulau Raya and Kampung Ipoh in Tanah Merah, Kampung Jambu and Kampung Mentua in Tumpat and lastly to Kampung Degong in Rantau Panjang. Among the disaster areas listed, Pulau Raya is an islet on the Kelantan River where 11 families dwell, all of whom are Chinese. The massive floods destroyed the solitary small bridge linking to Tanah Merah. Hence, the sole traffic road was severed. As the catastrophe victims endured the crisis, CRSM volunteers ensured delivery of necessities to them by boat. The MCA Division and village heads were consistent in furnishing CRSM with situation reports eg victims fully utilising their food supplies or electricity cut-off in some zones thereby reflecting their concern for the victims and remedial measures required. PRovding daily updates of the rivers’ water level and weather forecast, CRSM Facebook’s alerts served another form of public service.
Fortitude to inspire humanity
The numerous difficulties the 32 CRSM volunteers encountered along the journey e.g. the ravaged landscape prevented the 4-wheel drive from trudging through did not discourage their determination. At times, the only method the CRSM team could undertake to ensure aid arrived was by physically lifting the dried food stuff and supplies out of the vehicle, tread through muddy waters, and hand-by-hand, carry these daily essentials to the victims. It is the hope of CRSM that whatever aid rendered at this critical juncture may help the victims overcome their hardships. The destruction sceneries and victims’ hardships which the CRSM crew witnessed cast a shadow of heart-brokenness. Nevertheless, their iron willpower led the crew insisting that relief goods and compassion must reach at all cost so as to inspire hope where all seems lost.
May the close co-operation between the MCA Kelantan, Divisions and CRSM during the Kelantan floods inspire more members and the public to volunteer for humanitarian works.
UPDATED January 2017
Risks & Challenges
1. Food may not enough for a month got victims.
2. Floods force schools closed, students unable attend class.
3. Giving aid for victims to reduce their sadness and stress.