NGO working to fly food supplies to 110 families in Pitas

Villagers in northern Pitas district getting their supplies of rations from volunteers at a pick up point after main road links to their villages were cut off by floods about 10-days agao.

KOTA KINABALU: Aid workers are hoping to reach some 110 families who have run out of food in a remote area in Sabah’s northern Pitas peninsula after road links to their villages were cut off following the bad weather that hit the state last week.

Non-governmental organisation Reach Out is hoping to get food supplies flown into the villages, which became inaccessible after the main bridge linking them to the outside world was damaged by floods caused by heavy rains, while the surrounding sea remains choppy.

Reach Out’s Fauziah Mohd Fuad Stephen, who is the organising chair for the relief activity, said the Layang Layang Helicopter Academy was sponsoring helicopters to distribute food in Kampung Lok Dangkaan and nearby villages in Pitas next Tuesday after the affected villagers requested assistance, and that “they have run out of food”.

She said Reach Out was working with 12 volunteers from within the area.

“The government did send supplies to most of the villages affected in Pitas but a few were missed out. Reach Out is trying to fill the gaps where possible, ” she added.

Last Thursday, Reach Out volunteers sent food to about 235 families in five villages that were cut off after road links were severed by landslides.

Volunteers in 10 vehicles braved muddy trails to reach a meeting point where residents then carried the supplies back to their villages.

The food aid donated by the public included 10kg packs of rice, oil, salt, sugar, soy sauce, noodles, eggs and powdered drink sachets for each family.

Some of the volunteers also donated solar powered lights as some of the villages are without electricity following the spate of bad weather.

Fauziah said donations from both locals and those from Peninsular Malaysia had helped.

She said several NGOs, including the Red Crescent, were also helping the people in Pitas, one of Sabah’s poorest regions located about 300km from the state capital.

Those who want to pitch in can contact Fauziah at 013-872 5659.

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