Focussing media attention on Vietnam
The press release has got some attention. Nick Finney did an interview with BBC World Today this morning – a really good outlet for us with global reach. I’m pleased we’re managing to carve out some attention for Vietnam amongst all the other stories going on. I spend the morning briefing journalists based in the region, they are interested and genuinely concerned. Most of them visited the affected areas in the first few days, and with ever-dwindling budgets at most media outlets, they are not planning on returning.
There’s a distribution in Quang Nam this afternoon of 200 household kits. Many of the families we had registered turned up at mid-day even though the distribution wasn’t due to start until 3pm. It shows how desperate for help they are to face three hours waiting in the blazing sun. We start early and the distribution goes by in a whirlwind in less than an hour. It makes me proud to see a street filled with people on bicycles with our kits in bright red buckets strapped to the back. I’m sure they’ll make a difference.
The news from Quang Tri is sounding pretty bad – as the roads open up more and more devastated villages are becoming accessible. Nick and I, joined by Phoung from Vietnam’s emergencies team, jump in a car to drive five hours up to Dong Ha, the provincial capital. We arrive just before midnight – it’s been a long day.