17 families in Vavaʻu housed in tents

Seventeen families in Vavaʻu are living in tents amid the massive cleanup effort in the islands following last month’s category four Cyclone Winston.

The Governor’s office in Vava’u said these are families from Feletoa, Ha’alafuli, Tu’anekivale, ‘Utulangivaka, Okoa, Pangaimotu and Mataika whose houses were destroyed during the cyclone.

The tents were part of relief supplies arrived with VOEA Late over the weekend including  blankets, tarpaulins, kitchen kits, water and sanitation hygiene kits donated by the New Zealand government. Most of these supplies  were  for future emergency responses it said.

New Zealand government also  helped fund fuel for the VOEA and willing to fund another two trips, depending on needs.

The shipments including building supplies and goods donated by the families of affected people in Vava’u.

Meanwhile Tonga sent one of its naval patrol boats, the VOEA Pangai to Fiji’s island of Vanuabalavu with food, water, shelter and kitchen kits as well as Fijian assessment teams to the island of Namuka.

Fiji’s death toll from Cyclone Winston has been confirmed to be 43 and about 55,000 people living in 899 evacuation centres.

“Fiji helped Tonga back in 1982 I think when we had our big cyclone then. It’s been ongoing relations in the past. This is the first time it’s a major disaster for Fiji and Tonga is only too willing to help,” Tonga’s Director of NEMO told Radio New Zealand International.

Hundreds of homes in Vavaʻu destroyed by Cyclone Winston

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