Bay Area groups aid Samoa quake victims

September 30, 2009 6:25:07 PM PDT
Several groups in the Bay Area are joining to help victims of the massive earthquake near the Samoan Islands.

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Church members at the Samoan Christian Fellowship in Fairfield are collecting supplies for quake victims. Isabella Rogers stopped off at the church on her way to work Wednesday morning. She had seen the pictures and felt she had to help.

"This is a human issue and we could all be struck with this at any given time. And I think if we don't give to one another -- I don't know how else we can survive," said Davis resident Isabella Rogers.

Ben Afisivalu is the lay pastor at the church and he is looking for help; as in anything from anyone.

"Canned food, water, clothes as well - that is what we plan to ship. We had some calls from people who want to donate beds and some furniture and we take anything," said Afisivalu.

Afisivalu has two brothers and a sister in the area impacted the tsunamis. They are okay but have been relocated to a different area. He has heard news that his fourth grade teacher had been killed.

"I don't know what happened, but I was just told that he died from the tsunami - so it's heartbreaking. He was a good teacher," said Afisivalu.

More help is on the way from Oakland International Airport, where 25 members of the FEMA Incident Management Assistance Team are on an assist mission.

"We are going to do assessments of what are the needs out there. Are their food needs? Do they need water, housing, tarps, medical supplies? What other commodities are needed out there? And once that is determined, what is the shape of the infrastructure? How do we get that in?" said FEMA's Casey de Shong.

Back in Fairfield they just heard that San Francisco Enterprises, an Oakland freight company is offering to store and ship donations that come into Fairfield and anywhere else in the Bay Area. SF Enterprises hopes to work with local churches, Red Cross and FEMA to get the goods to those that need it. They could possibly ship as early as Sunday. Each 40 foot container shipping from Oakland to Samoa would have cost about $6,000 to $8,000.

Samoa quake donation drives in the Bay Area:

Samoan Christian Fellowship
1200 Western Street
Fairfield, CA 94533
(707) 428-4221

LINK:
http://www.samoanchristianfellowship.org

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