Right now, rescue efforts are underway in Palu, on the Island of Sulawesi in Indonesia after a devastating earthquake and tsunami tore through the region.

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The disaster has killed more than 2,000 children, men and women, a further 2,549 have been severely injured and 113 people are still missing. Children are always the most vulnerable in disasters like this.

After the earthquake and subsequent tsunami families took to sleeping on the streets — too fearful to return to their homes because of aftershocks. Our UNICEF colleagues are on the ground reuniting children who have been separated from their families, providing tents to get children back to school and helping ensure children have access to clean water and sanitation. 
Nurul (15) is evacuated, in Central Sulawesi, after almost 48 hours of being trapped in the rubble of their house and being submerged in water. ©Tirto.id/Arimacswilander


“I am concerned for the children and families
who have survived this tragic event and
want to reassure our neighbours that
UNICEF Australia stands ready to provide
more resources at this most difficult time.”

What is the impact?

  • On Friday, September 28 an earthquake shook the island of Sulawesi in Indonesia
  • A subsequent tsunami then struck Talise beach in Palu City and beaches in Donggala
  • So far 2,045 people have been confirmed dead, 2,549 are seriously injured and 113 people are still missing
  • 80,000 people are living in temporary shelters or are displaced, and 66,000 homes have been damaged
  • Buildings, including shops, mosques and hotels have collapsed and been swept away or suffered extensive damage
  • More than 1,000 schools are feared to be affected - having a direct impact on around 19 per cent of the students in Central Sulawesi
  • The disaster is likely to have affected access to water in urban areas by disrupting piped water systems, refillable bottled-water depots and boreholes

What is UNICEF doing to help?

Our UNICEF team are on-site in affected areas, supporting the government's response in the areas of water, sanitation and hygiene, child protection, health, nutrition and education. We are: 
  • Reuniting children with their families. UNICEF teams are on the ground, tracing the families of children who have been separated from their parents
  • Getting children back to school. A total of 47 UNICEF school tents have been sent to the affected area and education specialists are in Sulawesi ensuring children return to school as soon as possible
  • Providing clean water. UNICEF is supporting water, sanitation and hygiene support in the region to ensure children and their families have access to clean water
  • Support for traumatised children. We plan to provide children with psychosocial support, child-friendly places to play 
Houses, schools, buildings and cars were destroyed by the earthquake and tsunami, leaving thousands of people without a home or shelter. ©Tirto.id/Arimacswilander

We know from the tsunami of 2004 that killed nearly 226,000 across the Indian Ocean, including 120,000 in Indonesia, that tsunamis are a deadly force and the recovery efforts are difficult. 

We are very experienced at responding to natural disasters in this region. On top of the 2004 tsunami, UNICEF has recently helped authorities in the Lombok earthquake, Papua New Guinea earthquake, and most recently, Typhoon Mangkut in the Philippines. 

Children are still fearful of the effects of the aftershocks and many of them have lost their loved ones, homes, schools and neighbourhoods. ©Tirto.id/Arimacswilander

Your donation will help us respond to the Indonesian tsunami that has threatened the lives of thousands of children.

Ninety cents of every $1 donated goes directly to our emergency response work. The remaining 10 cents covers the essential fundraising and administrative costs of raising public awareness and generating more financial support towards UNICEF's emergency response:
  • $58 could deliver an emergency hygiene kit to keep families clean and prevent the spread of disease
  • $109 could provide more than 200 sachets of emergency food for children who have lost their homes
  • $150 could deliver 23,500 water purification tablets to provide more than 100,000 litres of safe drinking water
As the toll of dead, injured and homeless continues to rise, so too does the need for an immediate and swift response.

By donating to the Indonesia Tsunami Appeal, you'll help children affected by this emergency. If the funds exceed the amount we require for Indonesia, then the money will be directed to other emergencies around the world. 
Please support the
Indonesia Tsunami Appeal

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All donations of $2 or more are tax deductible. ABN 35 060 581 437. Calculate your potential tax benefit here.

If you'd prefer to make your donation over the phone, please call our Supporter Relations team on 1300 884 233.

This is how we use your donation

90 cents of every dollar donated to this emergency went directly to our emergency response work in the field.

10 cents per dollar from funds raised by the public went to investing in further growing fundraising in Australia.

The value of non-monetary donations and gifts as well as fundraising costs that are funded by UNICEF Geneva and not the public are excluded from this bar chart. The values above are from UNICEF’s 2017 Annual Report.