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Volcano eruption & tsunami waves impact islands

Your donation, of any amount, will help purchase essential food, clean water and other essential items for the radio hosts (mostly volunteers) and those in greatest need within the community.

UPDATE – WEDNESDAY 19 JANUARY

Sadly, three people are so far confirmed dead from the main island of Tongatapu and also from Mango Island and Numuka Island.

Tongan Government has called the events an “unprecedented disaster” adding that“as a result of the eruption, a volcanic mushroom plume was released reaching the stratosphere and extending radially covering all Tonga islands, generating tsunami waves rising up to 15 metres, hitting the west coasts of Tongatapu Islands, ʻEua and Haʻapai Islands.” 

A patrol vessel has delivered water, food and tents.to residents of Mango island – where all homes have been destroyed – and has just undertaken a further trip with another health team, more resources and emergency responders to Mango, Fonoifua and Nomuka islands.

RNZAF aircraft are unable to land safely to bring in essential supplies because of the thick layer of ash covering the runway. Defence Minister, Peeni Henare reported that “the people in Tonga are, in some parts, sweeping the runway by hand, so it’s taken a bit of time.”

UPDATE – TUESDAY 18 JANUARY

Continue to pray for everyone across the Tongan islands affected by the volcano eruptions and tsunami.

Sadly, 1 death has now been confirmed (of a British woman swept away by the waves) and others are still reported missing.

Although we still haven’t received any news from Willy Florian (Station Manager) or others in Tonga, we believe in faith that they are well.

However, clean water and other essential food items will be in short supply as the ash-fall has contaminated water catchments and local crops.

Most properties along the western coast of Tongatapu are reported damaged or destroyed. The Ha’atafu beach resort, owned by a precious Tongan Christian family and used for the recent Tonga Christian Radio leadership training, “has been wiped out”.

Thank you for the generous donations already coming in, which will be used to directly help those in greatest need, which may include some of the radio station hosts as they are voluntary workers.

UPDATE – MONDAY 17 JANUARY

From the acting High Commissioner of NZ to Tonga, Peter Lund:

“Thanks everyone for your thoughts and concern. Tonga’s internet is down after the undersea cable broke yesterday. Thankfully we have satellite connectivity through the MFAT system – but only in the NZ High Com office. It’s been an awful time, but Nuku’alofa is still standing, electricity has been restored to many homes, local mobile phones working but not internationally. The big clean up will be getting under way this week. Volcanic ash has blanketed Nuku’alofa. Will try and load some photos this week.”

Sadly, we’ve just learned that the Ha’atafu beach resort, which is owned by a precious Tongan Christian family and was generously offered for the recent Tonga Christian Radio leadership training has gone. The owners have posted:

“… it’s with sadness to say that our beautiful home Ha’atafu beach resort has been completely wiped out. The whole western coastline has been completely destroyed along with Kanukupolu village. [Staff & family] just managed to get to safety running through the bushes and escaping and we’re not able to save anything. We will celebrate the small wins and gift of life from God for everyone and re evaluate where we go from here as a family and a business. We appreciate all your support and prayers.”

ORIGINAL POST

Pray for the Kingdom of Tonga following massive underwater volcano eruptions at Hunga-Tonga-Hunga-Ha’apai, that were even heard clearly in New Zealand (2,500Kms away).

Tsunami waves surged across the shorelines, and although the latest reports indicate that the extent of the damage is not as great as originally feared, the air is toxic and water catchments are becoming polluted with the ash fall-out – so clean water is urgently needed.

Shops have been allowed to open between 10am and 2pm today (Sunday).

Watch the video posts below from Willy Florian (Station Manager) on the power of the eruptions and the volcanic stones and ash that were falling around the island.

Telecommunications and power across Tongatapu (the largest island) have been down for over a day, and it could be weeks before communication is restored.

Please intercede for all who have been affected by this major event, and pray that the radio station can continue to broadcast the message of hope in Jesus (will need fuel to keep the generator running until power is restored).