We’re back in Northern Sumatra, Indonesia working just outside the 5 kilometre exclusion zone around Mount Sinabung. We're here to monitor and evaluate the work we did in January and February when we came to assist the evacuation and feeding of livestock from villages in the danger zone surrounding the erupting volcano.
Our first stop was the volcano observatory where we met with volcanologists for an update on the eruptions. With steam, ash and rockfalls visible on the volcano, it came as no surprise that it is considered very much still active. We then set out to find the animals we helped. We were happy to find cattle we evacuated from the danger zone looking healthy and happy in the evacuation camps (see photos of the same cow here) and even saw one calf who was born just two hours before we arrived!
A mother cow looks on as her two hour old calf learns to walk in an animal evacuation camp around Mount Sinabung
The fields surrounding Sinabung were looking green again, in contrast to the cementy grey appearance they had last time. Despite less eruptions and some rainfall, fine ash continues to fall every day and makes the grasses unsuitable for grazing.
Ducks walk in a coutryard with Mount Sinabung in the background.
People are clearing ash and grit from roadways, homes and fields as they try to adapt to living at the foot of an active and deadly volcano. Animal owners are still trying to wash/dust off fodder materials. We met farmers using the feed we provided to protect the animals through the critical period when uncontaminated food sources were scarce and they reported that their animals were even healthier now than before the eruption.
A farmer giving his cattle feed we provided for local livestock
While we’re happy to report that the animals are looking much healthier and safe, the continuing seismic and eruptive activities of the volcano has us all vigilant to the potential long term needs of the animals and their communities. We’ll be checking in with our partners here for regular updates and continue to be here for the animals when help is needed.