26 Apr 2007

Need for schools to re-open quickly in disaster zone in Solomon Islands

8:03 pm on 26 April 2007

Some children in Solomon Islands, who remain traumatised after the 2 April tsunami, would benefit from quickly returning to school according to World Vision.

All schools in both Western and Choiseul provinces have been closed since the tsunami and some have been completely destroyed.

They will remain shut until they have been assessed by seven teams of education officials who are visiting all the schools within the next week.

Country manager for World Vision Solomon Islands, Stephen Harries, says many children are still too frightened to go near the water.

Mr Harries says they have started providing activities for the children to help occupy their minds and relieve stress.

"Safe play areas are being set up in various IDP camps and in various communities and that will eventually lead into more of a structured school like situation. UNICEF has also brought in a school-in-the-box type arrangement which is quite a big box, weighs about 50 kgs and you open up and it's got every resource you'd need to start a school."

Country manager for World Vision Solomon Islands, Stephen Harries.