The Future is Equal

Photos of Oxfam’s work so far

A selection of photos from the first month of the tsunami response; from the morning after through the emergency aid and construction of safe water supplies.

The morning after

Damages on Sri LankaResidents of Kalmunai, on the Sri Lankan seafront, survey the damage caused by the devastating events of 26 December.

Credit: Howard Davies/Oxfam


Indonesian ChildOver in Banda Aceh, Indonesia, 13 year-old Fariz returns to the spot where his house used to stand. He and his sister have been adopted by their neighbour after losing the rest of their family.

Credit: Jim Holmes/Oxfam

Early days

Indonesian child helpingMany areas are inaccessible in the days following the tsunami. Near Banda Aceh in Indonesia, food, water and other supplies are dropped by helicopter in the short term (mainly by the US military), while emergency workers tackle the huge logistical problem of transporting adequate quantities of aid overland to where it is needed.

Credit: Jim Holmes/Oxfam

Against the odds

Water truck crossing Sri Lanka bridgeThere is no time to lose. In Sri Lanka, despite the onset of an early and heavy monsoon, Oxfam begins assessing how to best target its aid effort quickly and effectively. Here an emergency evaluation team makes its way across flooded roads south of Batticaloa.

Credit: Howard Davies/Oxfam

Aid from the UK

Charter plane bringing aids for tsunami victimsIn the UK, Oxfam staff are working around the clock to assemble life-saving aid. On December 29, a plane charted by Oxfam leaves for Sri Lanka and Indonesia with 27 tonnes of emergency water and sanitation equipment.

Credit: Jeff Vuolo

The journey ahead

Trucks carrying the aid for Sri Lanka Tsunami victimsWhen the plane arrives in Sri Lanka, Oxfam charters trucks to deliver essential aid. The roads are poor, and there are numerous army checkpoints, but the Oxfam trucks waste no time getting to their destination, Vakarai…

Credit: Howard Davies/Oxfam

Bringing hope

Sri Lanka camps…Where some 800 families are wating hopefully in displaced people’s camps to receive hygiene kits, Oxfam buckets, and blankets.

Credit: Howard Davies/Oxfam

Oxfam supplies

Buckets with aid for Sri Lanka Tsunami victimsStaff from Oxfam and local NGO partner, Sarvdaya, set about organising the distribution with one family member identified as the head of the family to sign for and receive aid packages. Each family receives one Oxfam blue bucket along with a basic hygiene pack and candles.

Credit: Howard Davies/Oxfam

Coming clean

Truck with aids for India Tsunami victimsMeanwhile in the Cuddalore district of Tamil Nadu in southern India, Oxfam has reached many seashore villages and is handing out hygiene kits. As Oxfam arrives, 612 people are known to have died in this district of 100,000 people,and over 20,000 people are living in relief camps.

Credit: Max Martin/Oxfam

Water for life

Indonesia workersIn a displaced persons camp in Banda Aceh, Indonesia, John, a local member of Oxfam’s staff tightens a fitting on a tap stand. Here, Oxfam has also been supplying water tanks for a clean water supply.

Credit: John Holmes/Oxfam

Tackling disease

A child getting clean waterThese tanks are allowing children and their families access to clean, safe water. It is hoped that this, combined with the distribution of hygiene packs, will limit the spread of disease in overcrowded camps.

Credit: Howard Davies/Oxfam

Making a difference

Sri Lankan childrenDespite very difficult conditions, Oxfam is reaching people and making a difference to families affected by the tsunami… and making some new friends along the way, like these children in Sri Lanka.

Credit: Howard Davies/Oxfam