The South Pacific division asked around parent company’s New Zealand building product distributors for building materials they could give at short notice to help the Tongan community, including many of the company’s own employees in Tonga.
South Pacific General Manager Brent Leach said: “We wanted to make sure our teams and their communities are looked after while they rebuild their lives after this catastrophic storm.”
“We’re in a unique position to help – being in the business of building and building products. We wanted to get a container across to Tonga as fast as possible and the response from our business managers was incredible,” Leach said.
“Within a day of picking up the phone, we had 20 tonnes of donated roofing iron, which is enough to help repair around 25 homes.”
The donated supplies collected to date fill three shipping containers with roofing from Dimond Roofing and ply, timber and fixings from PlaceMakers.
Fletcher Pacific Tonga branch manager, Josh Collins said there’s still a lot of work to do.
“With the damage to homes, schools and infrastructure the rebuild will take months if not years for some. Tongatapu and ‘Eua were the worst hit, with almost every building suffering some damage.”
The National Emergency Management Office will be coordinating the distribution of the donated supplies as they arrive in Tonga.
The Shelter Cluster –made up of international aid organisations – which supports people affected by disasters, will be distributing the materials to assist the most vulnerable people in making repairs to their houses first. - Matangi Tonga