I’ll be in some of the affected places in Thailand and Malaysia two weeks from now. By that time I wonder what it will look like – the debris strewn about will likely be mostly gone or moved, but I wonder what the people will look like, how they will be coping and trying to rebuild their homes, businesses, lives, and families. It’ll be interesting to say the least, and I expect to learn from it.
From what I’ve read, there doesn’t seem to be much need for unskilled volunteers. If I find people who want help that I can provide when I am passing through the area, then I may well end up stopping and staying in one community to help. I’d really like to, even though it would be hard work, but it seems there is an abundance of unskilled labour, and an urgent need for medical professionals and the likes.
All the tourists seem to be flying out of the area, going home… I can’t say I blame them after such a traumatic experience but the reality is that the locals in most areas desperately want the tourists to stay if they can, as tourism is the foundation of their economy. Certainly a bit of a strange situation – being asked to visit a place that has just suffered such a disaster.
What do YOU think about all this?