September 19, 2010

Doing My Bit

Aftershocks continue to shake and rumble through the Canterbury region, even 2 weeks after the 7.1 quake caused so much mayhem.  I flew down on the Thursday following the ‘big one’ to help out, to maintain some of the technology and services that the Welfare Centres were delivering to affected Christchurch residents.  One of the other challenges was working alongside other organisations and agencies who were also providing emergency relief to the area, and coordinating support between them.

I was there Thursday to Sunday and spent most of days travelling between welfare centres, our local office and the hotel. I don’t think I’ve ever used to much hand-sanitiser in such a short space of time. Some of the damage sustained was marginal, a few cracks here or there, but a great deal of it was  pretty major – even the hotel room I stayed in had a crack in the wall that went from floor to ceiling!

I felt some decent shakes while I was there too, a 4.0 hit while I was inside one of the welfare centres and the whole building creaked and groaned, then on the Sunday morning I was woken by the room moving rapidly side to side as a 4.6 struck.  The last one I felt was at the airport waiting for my flight home, it was a 4.5 and I think most of the people in the waiting area (underneath the plate glass windows) were glad when it finished.

The NZ Herald covered the story from the day it happened, but here’s my own snaps from the visit (apologies for the quality, still using BlackBerry until a new camera turns up!)

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