It was meant to spend my Christmas in Bangkok, and the trip to the Philippines, as you may remember, was supposed to be the last on in 2018.
I should have known better… One never plans anything, if working in humanitarian sector. On 22nd December in the evening, a series of eruptions from Anak Krakatau Volcano tucked in between Java and Sumatra at Sunda Strait caused two large tsunami waves that hit the surrounding coastal areas of the two islands.
The waves devastated many of the villages. Some were completely swept away from surface. Well over 400 people were killed, thousands were injured, and over 25.000 people became homeless.
The pictures in the gallery show our mission to the affected areas. We tried to assess the needs that people had, and designed our own support in the way that is the most effective and expected by the people.
The mission proved to be challenging. Locations were difficult to reach, because of torrential rains, flooding, and difficult topography.
Despite the trip to the affected communities happening during 25th and 26th December, I enjoyed my Christmas. It was not what I had expected, it was not conventional, but being there with people, who have lost everything was special. I will always cherish these moments.
And here are some pictures for you to see, if you wish to have a look.
After a very, very busy year (when it comes to travelling), the trip to the Philippines appears to be the last international trip of 2018.
The gallery shows the images of Baguio and Manila.
The visit to Baguio was related to my visit of the post-typhoon recovery projects that my organisation supports.
Then a trip to Manila involves a free weekend off (with some sightseeing)… and meetings with colleagues on workplaces for 2019!
Enjoy the pictures!
Spending time with friends and family is even more precious, when one visits beautiful places. Portugal and Spain are definitely some of the nicest countries on the planet, and there is no doubt that touring the sites with Mum and friends was very special.
Look up this link to have a glimpse of what we have seen and experienced.
On 28th September 2018, in the evening hours, Central Sulawesi of Indonesia was struck by the earthquake of 7.7 magnitude RS. The earthquake caused massive destruction in the City of Palu, and triggered a strong tsunami, as well as mudslides and phenomenon called ‘soil liquefaction’ across City of Palu, Sigu and in costal areas of Dongala. The Palu disaster follows the devastating earthquake that had hit the island of Lombok three months earlier. This gallery shows images of the destruction and humanitarian response to both of the crises (Palu and Lombok).
At the time of writing, the official figures suggest that at least 5,000 lost their lives and thousands people got injured (Sulawesi). However, it is clear that the number of people will increase dramatically, as more excavations are done. We all fear that the death toll could exceed 20,000 people.
The calamities caused apocalyptic destruction with ten of thousands houses being turned into rubble. Roads, electricity, water networks, hospitals, schools, shops, hotels are all destroyed or damaged.
The disaster has brought many people within Indonesia and some from outside of the country joining hands to help those surviving the disaster. But what is the most impressive is the solidarity and self-support of the families that survived themselves. People just do whatever they can to help one another - thus trying to cope with the loss of their loved ones or their possessions.
This gallery of pictures is a tribute to victims and survivors of this terrible tragedy, and to those doing whatever they can to help. You can view pictures, by clicking this link.
This gallery of pictures shows my visit to Canada, my visit to his new beginnings. Click here to view the gallery.
Enjoy the pictures and view them by clicking at this link.
The area is home to the largest refugee camp in the world, often referred to as ‘The Magacamp of Kutupalong’, where some 600,000 people live. There are smaller camps in its vicinity too, bringing the total population of refugees in this tiny part of Bangladesh to around 1 million.
While the people of Bangladesh are very hospitable, accommodating to their guests and always happy to lend the helping hand to the their guests, the mother nature is far less favourable. The camps are located among steep hills, which are mainly composed of sands. These areas are completely inappropriate for building any kind of residential infrastructure, let alone shelters for one million people! The main worry is that the heavy rains cause hills slide, valleys flood: which is a source of a grave danger to safety of people living there. The risks are not only related to immediate danger to body integrity (especially being buried in landslides), but also to public health issues. Flooding in the area with little and poor sanitation infrastructure, with poor access to potable water, in the area that is severely overcrowded makes the people extremely vulnerable to water-borne diseases, such as cholera, or diseases such as malaria or hepatitis A (and many, many others). Rains and muddy road also make it so much more challenging to bring supplies. Getting food, medicines, or anything else becomes a logistical nightmare!
So the race with time continues. Refugees and aid agencies of all sorts try prepare to minimise the effects of the disaster that will strike on many fronts. Reinforcing houses, levelling hills, building flood protection trenches, reinforcing mud roads, moving people to safer grounds, stocking up on medicines, vaccinating people, making latrines safer… The tasks are overwhelming, and we will clearly not be ready - however hard we try - we are just out of time already. However, as the struggle continues, the hope carries on too.
I salute the refugees, countless Bangladesh communities of Cox’s Bazar and countless number of aid workers trying to get ready for the emergency to come! Please look at the pictures here to admire their work and the beauty (yes, I insist saying - BEAUTY) of the camps!
The gallery (click for link here) shows the images from the trip: You will be able to catch some glimpses of Tonga - its beauty, but also the destruction that the calamity has brought to its people, nature and infrastructure; and also Suva of Fiji, and Sydney of Australia - the two places that I visited on the way to and from Tonga.
Here are some of the pictures from the assessment mission and rapid response mission from the place.
As we celebrate Christmas, please consider supporting people who may have suffered. Donating to the Red Cross, or to Action Against Hunger: the organisations that do an amazing work to provide the most needed relief to the victims of this calamity!
Here are some pictures from a day in this amazing park, referred to as ‘Ancient City’. Some of the pictures were taken by Tahir.
In addition, you may find some information from the ‘Ancient City’ at this official link of the ethnographical museum (website of the museum).
The refugee crisis in Bangladesh is one of the most significant one that the humanity faces in 2017. The challenges are complex and overwhelming. All of us need to do much, much more to deliver, or not to disappoint those who need our attention.
Here are the links to the pictures from the camps, and the pictures from the helicopter ride from Cox’s Bazar to Dhaka.
Links to pictures in older galleries 🇨🇿🇭🇺🇧🇬🇮🇹🇵🇹🇳🇱🇱🇺🇧🇪🇪🇸🇩🇪🇸🇰🇵🇱🇫🇷🇪🇺🇰🇷🇵🇭🇲🇳🇬🇧🇮🇸🇫🇴🇻🇦🇳🇿🇦🇪🇨🇦🇸🇳🇨🇼🇧🇶🇪🇬🇸🇨🇻🇳🇭🇰🇲🇴🇨🇳🇸🇸🇸🇩🇲🇿🇺🇬🇨🇩🇷🇼🇰🇪🇹🇭🇲🇲🇵🇰🇹🇩🇪🇹🇮🇳🇧🇩🇦🇺🇸🇬🇲🇾🇮🇩🇿🇦🇧🇷🇦🇴🇺🇸🇳🇦
Spring in Seoul 🇰🇷
A first trip to the Philippines 🇵🇭
Family in Thailand 🇹🇭🇵🇱🇪🇺
A day in Beijing and a week in Ulaanbaatar 🇲🇳🇨🇳
Floods in northern Malaysia 🇲🇾
Discovering Thailand 🇹🇭
Paris: the beauty with Mum 🇫🇷🇪🇺
Gdansk & Sopot 🇵🇱🇪🇺
Enjoying time with Mum 🇨🇿🇵🇱🇪🇺
UNDAC training 🇿🇦
The Warsaw Upraising Anniversary 🇵🇱🇪🇺
Visiting the long missed friends 🇮🇸
Faroe Islands 🇫🇴
Spas of Galicja 🇭🇺🇸🇰🇵🇱🇪🇺
In the land of Cyril and Methodius 🇧🇬🇪🇺
A wedding in the Eternal City 🇻🇦🇮🇹🇪🇺
Flying around South Sudan 🇸🇸
Southern New Zealand 🇳🇿
The green islands of fire! Northern part of the country 🇳🇿
Travelling to the other end of the world 🇦🇪🇦🇺🇵🇱🇪🇺
Unity State at war 🇸🇸
Sandomierz & Kazimierz Dolny 🇵🇱🇪🇺
South Sudanese refugees in Ethiopia 🇪🇹
A summer with friends 🇨🇦
'Uma marvilha: Lisboa' 🇵🇹🇪🇺
In Senegal for work & meeting friends in Dakar 🇸🇳
Playing a tourist guide around Slovakia and Poland 🇸🇰🇵🇱🇪🇺
Colourful Willemstad 🇨🇼
A trip to the Caribbean paradise 🇧🇶🇳🇱🇵🇱🇪🇺
Freezing in Nowy Sacz 🇵🇱🇪🇺
A stopover in Cairo 🇪🇬
Christmas vibes 🇸🇸
Visiting refugees again 🇸🇸
USA with Christine 🇺🇸
An autumn in Brussels & Amsterdam 🇧🇪🇳🇱🇪🇺
Indian Ocean paradise: Seychelles 🇸🇨
Refugees in northern South Sudan 🇸🇸
The team building 🇰🇪
Socialising in Juba 🇸🇸
May is the best time of the year 🇵🇱🇪🇺
Northern parts of Vietnam 🇻🇳
A week in Vietnam's Hanoi 🇻🇳
Hong Kong & Macao with Mum 🇭🇰🇲🇴🇨🇳
A visit to Upper Nile State 🇸🇸
Holidays in Mozambique 🇲🇿
My new home in Juba 🇸🇸
Visiting Sabrina and Thomas in Paris 🇫🇷🇪🇺
Nicki and Thomas' wedding 🇫🇷🇪🇺
Kosice & Presov during summer 🇸🇰🇪🇺
A very sunny summer 🇵🇱🇪🇺
The Ethnographical Park of Nowy Sacz 🇵🇱🇪🇺
The adventure in South Sudan begins 🇸🇸
Grand Duchy of Luxembourg 🇱🇺🇪🇺
Brussels marks new beginnings 🇧🇪🇪🇺
Goodbye 2010 and hello 2011 🇰🇪
A week in Oxford 🇬🇧
The desert city: Khartoum 🇸🇩
A disaster preparedness workshop in Maputo 🇲🇿
Adventures in central Africa 🇺🇬🇨🇩🇷🇼
The Kenyan kaleidoscope 🇰🇪
A new apartment in Nairobi 🇰🇪
Walking the streets of old Yangon 🇲🇲
Chills of Bangkok 🇹🇭
The Shwedagon Pagoda 🇲🇲
Visiting Oxfam's regional office 🇹🇭
November in Poland 🇵🇱🇪🇺
Impressions of Warsaw 🇵🇱🇪🇺
A long weekend in Spain 🇪🇸🇵🇱🇪🇺
Arriving to Myanmar 🇲🇲
Krakow, the Europe's stunning beauty 🇵🇱🇪🇺
A day in the Tatras 🇵🇱🇪🇺
Time at home in Poland and Slovakia 🇸🇰🇵🇱🇪🇺
Berlin, my favourite city 🇩🇪🇪🇺
Visiting friends in Germany 🇩🇪🇪🇺
Socialising with colleagues 🇵🇰
Islamabad, Pakistan's capital city 🇵🇰
A mission to Chad's Sahara 🇹🇩
An early spring in Warsaw 🇵🇱🇪🇺
Jewels of Somali region of Ethiopia 🇪🇹
Warsaw, Poland's capital 🇵🇱🇪🇺
Moving to Addis Ababa 🇪🇹
Winter break at home, with friends 🇸🇰🇵🇱🇪🇺
New Year's Eve 2008/2009 celebrations 🇵🇱🇪🇺
Christmas with family 🇵🇱🇪🇺
Visiting my teacher, Jean 🇺🇸
Inspirational Kolkata 🇮🇳
Bangladesh, my love 🇧🇩
Beautiful Queensland, a friends' visit in western Australia 🇦🇺
Discovering Asia's hotspot, Singapore 🇸🇬
A day in Kuala Lumpur 🇲🇾
Working in, and exploring Indonesia 🇮🇩
Humanitarian response to the earthquake 🇵🇰
A visit to David and his family 🇬🇧
Przemysl, the beauty of eastern Poland 🇵🇱🇪🇺
Travelling to the southmost part of Africa 🇿🇦
Ile de Re in France with ACF colleagues 🇫🇷🇪🇺
A visit to Rio de Janeiro 🇧🇷
The Angolan coast 🇦🇴
The Big Apple 🇺🇸
Memories from Namibia 🇳🇦