Sunda Straits Tsunami: Third Disaster to hit Indonesia in the Last 6 Months

Sunda Straits Tsunami: Third Disaster to hit Indonesia in the Last 6 Months

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JAKARTA (December 23, 2018) – On Saturday night, December 22, a tsunami hit the islands of Sunda Straits, to the west of Java. CARE is ready to respond. 

“CARE has an office and an existing water and sanitation project in schools in Serang Regency, the worst hit area,” says Helen Vanwel, CARE’s country director in Indonesia. “We are prepared and able to assist with the delivery of hygiene kits if needed.”

So far, more than 220 people have been killed and more than 600 injured, with hundreds more missing. These numbers are likely to rise as more information comes in. Power remains out across the affected areas. This latest earthquake comes three months after a 7.5 magnitude earthquake and tsunami devastated the island of Sulawesi; killing over 2,000 people. 

CARE is about to begin responding to the Sulawesi disaster with emergency relief items, such as kits that include buckets to collect water, soap, and sanitary pads for women. “This tsunami in the Sunda Straits is the third natural disaster to affect Indonesia in the last 6 months” says Vanwel. “Aid agencies and the government are already stretched to respond to all these different disasters. This latest tsunami shows the importance of early warning systems and good disaster preparedness mechanisms.” 


About CARE in Indonesia

CARE has worked in Indonesia since 1967, initially focusing on food distribution, small infrastructure projects, health, the environment, and water and sanitation. In 2004, CARE Indonesia was one of the primary emergency responders after the South Asian tsunami. Emergency response and disaster risk reduction with a focus on women and girls is always CARE Indonesia’s first priority.  Other core activities all focus on women and youth, and include: Integrated risk management comprising resilience, food security and climate change; economic empowerment and leadership; and water, sanitation, and hygiene.


About CARE

Founded in 1945 with the creation of the CARE Package®, CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. CARE places special focus on working alongside women and girls because, equipped with the proper resources, they have the power to lift whole families and entire communities out of poverty. That’s why women and girls are at the heart of CARE’s community-based efforts to improve education and health, create economic opportunity, respond to emergencies and confront hunger. Last year CARE worked in 93 countries and reached more than 63 million people around the world. Learn more at

Media Contact:

Mahmoud Shabeeb, +962-79-146-39-03 (based in Amman, Jordan)

More than 40 people have been killed and almost 600 injured in the tsunami that hit the Indonesian islands of Sunda Straits. This is the third natural disaster to hit Indonesia in six months. (Photo: Fauzan Ijazah/CARE).