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Qld organisation rallying help for cyclone ravaged Fiji

A QUEENSLAND Fijian organisation is rallying support for the island nation's cyclone victims.

Cyclone Winston hit Fiji with more than 300kmh winds on February 20, killing at least 43 people and leaving tens of thousand of people homeless.

Recent reports have suggested that more than 55,000 people are still sheltering at evacuation centres in Fiji, with the actual number of people requiring assistance estimated at more than 120,000.

Brisbane Fijian Seventh Day Adventist Church cyclone relief secretary Roger Mattner said authorities were beginning to find more victims as they accessed the islands that had been cut off.

"The outer islands are among the worst affected," Mr Mattner said.

"The Lomaiviti Group, which has about seven main islands, is one of those.

"Koro has been totally evacuated due to the disease risk.

"I had the chance to speak to two of my uncles and they are saying that because Fiji lives off subsistence farming and all the crops have been destroyed, food is going to be a big issue.

"Clothing is also a problem, because most people escaped with the clothes on their backs."

A collection of photographs Mr Mattner sent to the QT go some way to show the devastation that the cyclone caused.

There are now about 1000 Australian Defence Personnel in the country as part of the international relief effort.

Mr Mattner is calling on the generosity of Ipswich residents to donate to the Brisbane Fijian SDA Church's cause.

"I guess many people do not realize the extent of damage Tropical Cyclone Winston brought upon Fiji recently - these pictures are just a little glimpse of the havoc it created," he said.

The organisation is arranging for a 20-foot container of cyclone relief items to be sent to Fiji and will welcome donations towards the effort.

To assist, contact Mr Mattner on 0437 856 202 or email bfsdaclerk@gmail.com.

Bank account details for money donations are CUA, Brisbane Fijian SDA Church, BSB: 814-282; Acc no: 30619293; reference: name of donator, cyclone relief.



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