A 7.4 magnitude earthquake and tsunami hit Central Sulawesi Province on 28 September.

The earthquake triggered a series of tsunami waves that reached up to three metres, sweeping away all in their path along beaches in Donggala and Palu. Over 2.4 million people have been affected by this disaster and so far more than 2,000 deaths have been reported.

Rescue teams are struggling to reach all affected areas due to widespread destruction of roads and bridges. Power and communication lines have also been knocked out. With heavy rain likely in the area over the coming weeks, the threat of waterborne disease outbreaks is growing.

World Vision’s Radika Pinto, reporting from affected area, says the earthquake and tsunami have caused a catastrophic situation. "I’m afraid the death toll is going to continue to rise dramatically. The smell of death is still strong in the air.”

Indonesia earthquake and tsunami FAQs

It’s estimated that more than 2.4 million people have been affected by the earthquake and tsunami.

Survivors are in urgent need of:

  • food
  • clean water
  • medical treatment
  • temporary housing

With aftershocks continuing, many people are trying to flee the area or build makeshift shelters away from the water because they are terrified of another tsunami.

World Vision has been working in Indonesia since the 1960s and has local staff and long-standing programs in the earthquake zone.

We are working closely with Indonesia’s National Disaster Management Agency to assess needs and have already started delivering relief to children and families, including blankets and tarpaulins. We have also set up an infant and young child feeding centre at our office in Palu town.

In the coming days and weeks, we aim to reach 80,000 survivors through activities including: 

  • distributing food and providing clean water and emergency toilets
  • providing shelter and hygiene items including blankets, soap and tarpaulins
  • working with local health workers to halt the spread of disease
  • setting up safe spaces where children can play, learn and receive specialist support

The most pressing needs right now are to ensure the injured get medical treatment, measures are in place to prevent the spread of disease, and that vulnerable children and families are safe.

World Vision has several development projects in the earthquake zone that support thousands of sponsored children, as well as two projects funded by the Australian Government.

At this stage, we have been unable to confirm if any children sponsored by Australians have been affected. Many remote areas haven’t been reached yet and communications are very difficult due to damaged infrastructure.

We are monitoring the situation closely and will update sponsors as soon as information is available.

Donations over $2 to our Indonesia Earthquake and Tsunami Appeal may be tax deductible depending on your own personal tax position.

Donate by 31 October to help survivors of the earthquake and tsunami.


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 Help Indonesia's earthquake survivors

We need your help now to raise $2 million by the end of October to provide survivors with food, clean water, shelter and safe spaces for children.It’s estimated that more than 2.4 million people have been affected. Homes, schools, hospitals and other buildings have been badly damaged or destroyed. Infrastructure, including roads, bridges and power lines, has also been severely affected.