Earthquake diary
UNV volunteer Liu Lei (right) interprets at a meeting of Red Cross personnel in the aftermath of the 2008 Sichuan earthquake. (L. Liu/UNV)
On 12 May 2008 an earthquake measuring 7.8 on the Richter scale struck Sichuan province in south-western China. UNV volunteers serving nearby felt an obligation to contribute, and volunteered to help the victims.

What follows is a diary of Mr. Liu Lei's work as a field interpreter and volunteer manager with the Red Cross in the Mianyang area; he was later joined by communications officer Ms. Liu Hui, who contributed some photography. Ms. Hui was also featured in an online video discussing the importance of NGOs and volunteers in building communities.

Liu Hui and Liu Lei, UNV volunteers

(Note: diary written 'blog style' in reverse order. See also a Chinese language blog:

NGO, volunteers play big role in China quake relief 
An online video featuring UNV volunteer Liu Hui,  one of the two UNV volunteers that helped earthquake survivors in Mianyang, Sichuan. The online discussion focused on how non-government organization, including volunteers, can play a role in building better communities.  Visit site

More about: China  Emergency relief
Children in the Sichuan earthquake zone make the best of living in temporary accommodation. (L. Liu/UNV)
Earthquake Diary: 1 June by Liu Lei
Sichuan Province, China: Sunday is International Children's Day, and this year people around China have one common concern: children in the earthquake-hit regions. We know that many children suffered in the devastating quake but there are still many of them who survived, and they are eager to get back to study and playing with their friends. Children are the most vulnerable group in our community and much attention needs to be paid on them.  Read entry
Lacking adequate sanitation and water, people in the Sichuan earthquake zone dig wells. (L.Liu/UNV)
Earthquake Diary: 30 May by Liu Lei
Mianzhu, Sichuan Province, China: The best way to prevent epidemics in quake affected areas is to guarantee the safety of drinking water and the treatment of waste. IFRC has paid much attention to that and sent a health delegation to follow it up. Today I will go with the British ERU to Jiulong and Banqiao Townships of Mianzhu City, which were destroyed by the tremor, to investigate where to locate the water purification system and set up mobile toilets in order to ensure sanitation.  Read entry

UNV volunteer Liu Hui comforts a woman affected by the Sichuan earthquake. (H. Liu/UNV)
Earthquake Diary: 29 May by Liu Hui
Sichuan Province, China: Ms. Liu Hui and Mr. Gao Wei were originally serving with the Beijing Youth League on the joint project with UNV and UNDP, 'Strengthening Volunteerism for Development through the Beijing Olympics'. Here are some photographs of them interacting with people in the earthquake zone.  Read entry

Tents sent by the Netherlands begin to arrive in the Sichuan erathquake zone. (L.Liu/UNV)
Earthquake Diary: 28 May by Liu Lei
Chengdu, Sichuan Province, China: There is a batch of 1,900 family tents from the Netherlands, co-donated by the Dutch Government and Dutch Red Cross, which will arrive in Chengdu. In order to understand all the details of the logistics procedure, I  visit Chengdu International Airport to find out how the tent transportation pipeline works.  Read entry

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