BBC Home
Explore the BBC
BBC News
Launch consoleBBC NEWS CHANNEL
Last Updated: Wednesday, 5 October 2005, 11:34 GMT 12:34 UK
UK charities defend tsunami aid
Fishermen in Sri Lanka
UK charities say they have helped restore people's livelihoods
Britons can be happy with their contribution to the Asian tsunami relief effort, UK charities have said.

Cafod and Christian Aid were responding to criticism of the international aid effort in a report by the Red Cross.

Both charities welcomed the report but said the donations they received had given homes and livelihoods to victims of last year's Boxing Day disaster.

Cafod spokesman Patrick Nicholson said donors "should be happy because we did what we said we would do".

"We have built houses, provided livelihoods and worked within the aid agency community in making sure things have been co-ordinated properly," he said.

It is simply very complex and chaotic when a disaster like this strikes
Matthias Schmale
British Red Cross

Christian Aid's Asia specialist, Anjali Kwatra, said the improvements she had seen in Sri Lanka were "fantastic".

"Fisherman going out fishing with their boats, houses being built - that is what you want to see and that is where the money has gone," she said.

The Red Cross report claimed that rivalries between hundreds of groups led in some cases to duplication of effort and delay in aid reaching those affected.

Both Cafod and Christian Aid agreed that mistakes had been made, but said it was inevitable when dealing with a disaster on the scale of the tsunami.

Christian Aid said its work was conducted through local charities and NGOs to make sure relief reached those who needed it.

The international director of the British Red Cross told the BBC that 300 to 500 charities had arrived in Sri Lanka following the disaster, some of which had little or no experience.

See the moment when the Asian tsunami hit

Townsville Bulletin Rivalries hobbled tsunami aid effort - 36 hrs ago
Sky News Rivalry 'Hampered' Tsunami Aid Response - 41 hrs ago
Guardian Unlimited Tsunami report criticises relief effort - 53 hrs ago
Daily Mail Tsunami relief effort 'was chaotic' - 54 hrs ago
The Scotsman Tsunami report criticises UN's relief efforts in wake of disaster - 62 hrs ago
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Tsunami relief effort 'chaotic'
05 Oct 05 |  Asia-Pacific
Can aid do more harm than good?
27 Aug 05 |  Africa
Tsunami aid 'went to the richest'
25 Jun 05 |  South Asia

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific