2018 Sulawesi/Palu, Indonesia

Earthquake and Tsunami Response

Give2Asia is now mobilizing funds to support local response to the earthquake and tsunami on and around the island communities in Sulawesi, Indonesia.

On September 28, two earthquakes (scale 5.9 and 7.4) struck Sulawesi and triggered a tsunami which has caused at least 2,000 deaths and has the potential to affect 1.5 million people. Give2Asia is following its progress and the response of local partners.


Fundraising Benefit in San Jose

On October 23, the Asian Chefs Association held a fundraiser to support Give2Asia’s local relief efforts following the deadly tsunami and earthquake that struck Indonesia. The event raised over US$ 50,000 for our local partners engaged in immediate and long-term response efforts. For more about the event, including photos and sponsorship details, visit the benefit page.


Situation Overview

Updated on October 10th, 2018

  • On September 28, 2018, a 5.9 earthquake followed hours later by a 7.4 earthquake triggered a tsunami which hit the city of Palu on Sulawesi island, 1,500 km away from Jakarta.

  • Current fatalities are estimated to be over 2,000, and numbers are expected to rise. 1.53 million are potentially affected, with 200,000 people currently in need of food and shelter.

  • After the earthquake, a tsunami warning alert was activated predicting a potential .5m-3m wave. The alert was deactivated shortly afterward at 18:36 local time. Officials report that there may have been a technical failure related to the sensors which kept from detecting the high water levels approaching Palu.

  • The tsunami that hit the city of Palu with reports estimating its height up to 6 meters (20 feet), killing hundreds on the island. Indonesia’s location in the “Ring of Fire”, a series of volcanoes and fault lines, makes it particularly vulnerable to disasters such as earthquakes, volcanoes, and tsunamis.

  • Landslides have resulted in closures of nearby airports and ports, and the loss of electricity and phone lines has made gathering immediate updates from the ground a challenge.

  • As of October 8th, the Indonesian government is prioritizing local responders and have asked foreign organizations to leave. Give2Asia works with local Indonesian responders and is unaffected by this change.

Current Response & Partners

Give2Asia is working with our local partners in affected areas of Indonesia to assess needs and develop a response plan that prioritizes a balance of immediate relief, long term recovery, and preparedness. We have two local partners who have moved into the area to do rapid assessments and deliver emergency food and non-food aid. Current needs are focused on basic provisions such as first aid, WASH kits, halal food, and other forms of immediate support, though we will continue to develop strategy as we know more. Give2Asia will work closely with our local networks on the ground to continue assessing needs and supporting affected communities.

IDEP Foundation

IDEP Foundation has extensive experience responding to other natural disasters in the area, including the 6.9 earthquake which struck Lombok island earlier this summer. They are partnering with local teams to assess needs and send emergency items. IDEP is working with the “Poso Volunteer Team” (Emergency Response team from the neighbouring town of Poso) consisting of Yayasan Pribumi Alam Lestari (YPAL), IDEP, KPA Tarpesis, and Student Groups from Sintuwu Maroso Poso University.

IDEP is assembling and distributing family buckets containing essential food and sanitation items for families in their immediate recovery needs.

PKPU Human Initiatives

PKPU supports communities through three main programs: the handling of aids for disasters, rehabilitation, and community empowerment. PKPU's work is channelled to nearly all of the provinces of Indonesia through its 15 regional branches and work partners. These programs are targeted towards poor communities, evacuees, and victims of disasters.

PKPU is sending a response team with six assessment people from Makassar (16 hrs from Palu) to assess the situation and begin sourcing and distributing resources to those in need. PKPU serves as a social agency that handles local aid and response for disasters, rehabilitation, and community empowerment.

Project HOPE

Project HOPE is a renowned global health and relief organization that works with local communities in over 25 countries. They began working in Indonesia in 1960 and have spent decades expanding the region’s maternal and childcare sectors as well as mobilizing immediate and long-term relief initiatives for disasters such as the 2004 tsunami. They are currently on the ground in Palu planning the following activities: 

  • Provide urgent medical care through static and mobile medical units;

  • Establish a supply chain of pharmaceuticals, and medical and humanitarian supplies; and

  • Mitigate the impact of infectious disease outbreaks through provision of hygiene supplies and hygiene promotion.

The Asia Foundation - Indonesia

The Asia Foundation (TAF) is an international nonprofit committed to improving lives across Asia. They have six decades of experience across the continent and work closely with innovative local government, civil society and private sector leaders. TAF is currently working with local civil society organizations in the affected area to address urgent needs in the governance of recovery and long term rehabilitation through health and psycho-social support in schools, children centers, and religious centers.

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To date, Give2Asia has swiftly and thoughtfully responded to over 40 natural disasters in Asia and rebuilt local communities. Let us be a part of your disaster preparedness and response efforts. 

For more information, contact Sheena Agarwal, Development Manager of Disaster Programs at +1 415 967 7378 or sagarwal@give2asia.org