23 September 2021 12:33

Sydney Floods: Hindu community opens their homes and temples to help and support affected people

It has been a difficult few days for Sydneysiders because of the unprecedented rain and flooding as a result. Brave Women and Men of State Emergency Services are doing every bit to reach everyone who needs them.

However, there are a lot of people who have opened their homes for flood-affected families, Anand Manickam, joint secretary of Hindu Council of Australia’s NSW chapter is one of them.

Anand told The Australia Today, “After seeing the flood situation for last two days, I had volunteered to share my shelter with few people as my Hindu dharma tell me to always help people in need. By the grace of Shiva, we have a 6 bedroom house in Sydney (NorthWest) and can accommodate at least a couple of families.”

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When we offer help, we never see what background a person is from. They could be from any ethnicity, religion, or language community, said Mr. Manickam.

“In fact today morning we hosted two families one Catholic and other Hindu as due to flood warnings they were asked to evacuate.”

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He further explains a few families are still in touch with me caused by flood evacuation/warnings (they live very close to the Nepean River), we have talked to a lot of our volunteers who are ready to accommodate these families in their homes.

He is not alone to answer the call to humanity in this hour of need.

A lot of members of the devoted Hindu community in Sydney have come forward to provide support for the flood-impacted communities around Sydney and other parts of NSW.

Ankur Patel is member of Australian Hindu Foundation.

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He took it to social media to publish an appeal.

“We are met with yet another challenge in the form of a once-in 100 years flood event. It’s an ever-changing situation and let us all be vigilant and help each other. I live in Marsden Park. If you need shelter, food, or any other support, please reach out to me via DM without any hesitation. Prayers for all Sydneysiders to quickly overcome this. Hare Krishna”

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Diksha Varun Sharma lives around Penrith with her family.

She was panicking as the situation was quickly deteriorating and she was concerned about the safety of her nine-month-old child.

Social Media page Sydney Hindus reassured her and arranged accomodation near Blacktown.

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Arya Samaj Temple is situated in the flood-affected area of Sydney. Temple is partially inundated in floodwater and can’t be accessed.

However, this has not dempened their spirits, they are persistently trying to organise help for community.

Suresh Chandra, President of Arya Samaj Temple said, “Our temple is inundated in flooding but our spirits of helping the community can never be drowned. Our temple community is ready to help and support anyone who needs shelter or food in case they had to leave their homes.”

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Vishva Hindu Parishad Volunteers and Hindu Social Services Foundation is working closely with emergency relief services to provide food and accommodation.

VHP Australia said We monitoring the situation and our members are ready to act on the directions of the authorities where ever required.

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Community members were quick to respond to the calls for support.

Anandsinh Jhala said, “I have two bedroom vacant at my house in Harris park, please feel free to contact me.”

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On the other hand, Hindu benevolent fund and Karma kitchen teams are engaging with SES state emergency services teams from different regions to provide the support they need.
Sanjeev is a volunteer with Hindu Benevolent Fund.

He said, “We are already in touch with two regions and approaching others. We will do what we can as our motto is “Vasudhav kuttumbkam” which means we all are one family.

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