Bangladesh cyclone appeal launched

MEMBERS of Suffolk's Bangladeshi community today launched a major appeal to help their countrymen hit by last month's devastating cyclone to rebuild their lives.

By Richard Cornwell

MEMBERS of Suffolk's Bangladeshi community today launched a major appeal to help their countrymen hit by last month's devastating cyclone to rebuild their lives.

The community throughout the Ipswich and Felixstowe area is joining together to raise as much money as they can from a series of special events over the next few months.

They have launched ABC - Appeal for Bangladesh Cyclone - and have been joined in their campaign by Ipswich Borough Council, Ipswich Town Football Club, Suffolk County Council and The Evening Star.

Mahbub Alam Shamim, chairman of Ipswich Mosque, said: “What the people in Bangladesh have been going through has been dreadful and we want to do as much as we can to help.

“Over the next two or three months we will be holding special events and a number of the restaurants in the area have already said they will help us with special nights and we are looking at other ideas, too.

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“We hope everyone will come together, too, for a night of live music and food at the Town Hall.”

A collection will also be held at Ipswich Town's game on December 22.

County councillor Jeremy Pembroke said he had been made aware of Bangladeshi community's bid to help the victims of the cyclone at a recent Race and Faith forum at Endeavour House.

“When Cyclone Sidr hit Bangladesh, families were quite literally torn apart. Waves swept children from the arms of their parents,” he said.

“The Suffolk Bangladeshi community has my support and I would encourage all people in Suffolk to get behind this cause.”

Cyclone Sidr slammed into the south east coast of Bangladesh, killing 3,100 people and leaving about one million homeless.

It lashed the coastline with winds of more than 140mph, creating storm surges which reached more than a metre high. Heavy rains caused widespread flooding which destroyed thousands of homes, and left many districts without power.

Much of Bangladesh is low lying and the country is no stranger to tropical cyclones.

If you are planning fundraising events to help the appeal, contact the Star newsdesk now on 01473 324788.

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