A six member team of Caritas Vietnam visited flood victims in Mu Cang Chai district of Yen Bai Province on Aug 17, to provide emergency aid to flood victims.
Bishop Joseph Nguyen Van Yen, vice president of Caritas Vietnam, led the six member delegation to the remote northwestern provinces of Vietnam where activities by Catholics are restricted by the communist government.
"Local Catholics have not been recognized by government authorities, so we try to pay quick, quiet visits to victims, console them and give them money so that they can deal with their situation," Bishop Yen just before the visit.
The prelate said victims badly need financial assistance to help repair houses, buy basic foods and seeds to cultivate crops. Village children also require books and clothes for the new school year starting early September.
Bishop Yen said the delegation would explore the situation faced by local people to make plans to help them in the future.
Father Joseph Nguyen Trong Duong, who oversees Mu Cang Chai district, said the houses, cattle and crops of the local people are washed away. The district has a population of 50,000 people, 90 percent of them are Hmong ethnic villagers.
Flooding in the four mountainous provinces of Dien Bien, Lai Chau, Son La and Yen Bai was caused by heavy rains on Aug. 1-6. According to a government statement the floods claimed 26 lives and 15 people remain missing The floods have also destroyed 230 houses, 340 hectares of crops and 145 irrigation systems. (UCAN)