Testimonies of quake survivors in Pariaman and Padang, Indonesia

Zaidir, 37 years old: I have lost everything

Zaidir, 37, was living in Kampung Panas, a village close to Pariaman, with 12 family members. His village was swept away by a landslide and 7 family members were killed. "I was very upset, because I lost everything, my house and my family members," he said.

He was staying in a tent provided by the government. However the tent was not waterproof. "When it rained, the water came into the tent," said Zaidir. MSF sent waterproof tents for him and other families.

Zaidir says he doesn't want to go back to his village because everything has been destroyed and he is frightened of another earthquake. He plans to go to his wife's village, Ampalm, 10 km away where he will build a house and try to look for a job.

Ismael, 23 years old: Was buried in a landslide

Ismael, 23, was living in Lubuk Laweh village near Pariaman with four family members. His village was destroyed by a landslide. "I was praying in my home alone. When the earthquake happened, I ran out and a coconut tree fell on me and I was buried by soil," he said.

He was buried under three metres of earth for an hour until a rescue team uncovered his head and shoulders, but the lower part of his body was trapped all night. "I could only feel pain from my leg, I prayed all the night," said Ismael.

Ismael and his family are traumatised by the earthquake. Although his mother was not at home during the earthquake, she is still badly affected. "My mother cries every day. Once I see her crying, I also cry." He has difficulty sleeping only managing about  four hours a night.

He is waiting for the government to arrange a place for his family to rebuild the house, but he hasn't received any news yet. "I want to resume my normal life and work again with my mother and family," says Ismael.

Dedi, 18 years old: Abdomen was injuried

Dedi, 18, was living in Lubuk Laweh village near Pariaman with his mother and six family members. One of his cousins was killed in the earthquake. "I was sleeping in the guardroom of my house in my village. When the earthquake happened, I ran outside and I was under the soil after 10 seconds," Dedi recalled.

The lower part of his body was trapped. "I heard many people calling for help, but after a while, it fell silent and I knew that I was the only one alive." Dedi said that he kept shouting for help and trying to free himself. He eventually succeeded but was so traumatised he just sat there until another survivor, Novaldi, found him. His abdomen was injured. "I have no problem sleeping," he said, "but my family finds it difficult to sleep. They are also alarmed by any loud noise."

He plans to look for a new job after his injury is healed, but he doesn't know what kind of job he can find. "I don't worry that another earthquake will come, but I want to live somewhere else. I am waiting for help from the government."

Novaldi, 29 years old: Actively helped other survivors

Novaldi, 29, lived with 7 members of his family in Lubuk Laweh village near Pariaman. He and his father are the only survivors of a landslide. "I was sleeping at home alone when earthquake happened. My mother, sisters, brother-in-law and nephews were killed by a landslide," he said.

He was not injured in the earthquake and helped other survivors in the village. He has been traumatized: "I worried a lot and had difficulty sleeping during the first two weeks, but I am getting better after having a psychological consultation with MSF."

Novaldi actively participates in the community now, helping to distribute relief material and playing with the children. "I don't want to be dependent. If nobody does it, I will do it. I really want to help others and show other survivors that we must not be lazy," he says.

He says that he is satisfied and happy with what he is doing now and is confident he will find a new job, rebuild his house and resume his normal life.

Alvin, 10 years old: Happy to return school

Alvin, 10, lived with his family in Bari village near Padang. "I was taking shower when the earthquake happened," says Alvin. He and his family ran out of their house and no one was injured, but their house was destroyed. He is now living in a tent given by his auntie.

"I can sleep at night, but I still feel sad. I do not tell other people but keep it in my heart," says Alvin. After the earthquake, his school was closed and he had to stay with his family all day. He went with his father went to help repair their house, while his 5 years old brother waited outside. "At first I was afraid to go into the house, because I worried that another earthquake would come. But my parents told me not to be afraid, so I went with my father."

The school has now re-opened and Alvin says he is glad to go to school again. "I am so happy, because I have a lot of friends in school and I can play with them."

Novia, 25 years old: A teacher attends psychological education session

Novia, 25, is the teacher at SD07 school in Bari village near Padang. "My house received minor damage in the earthquake, and no one was  hurt," says Novia. "But I was afraid and I prayed."

Her life doesn't appear to be affected by the earthquake, but her students are. She says: "They are frightened that the earthquake will happen again." Although she has not been trained in psychological support, she still tried to support her students by playing with them to help relieve their stress.

She has now joined the psychological education scheme provided by MSF. "It is very useful and good for the children. I will try to do it with my students. I now have the confidence to support them."

Alvion, 25 years old: Cannot sleep

Both Alvion, 25, and his mother are teachers of Pauh village in Padang. He was asleep when the earthquake struck. His home was completely destroyed, but fortunately he and his family were unhurt.

"We are traumatised and we can't sleep, even the baby," says Alvion. So far he has built a small shelter for his family, and although he fears that the earthquake will come again, plans to rebuild the house on the same  site. "We don't want to stay here, but we have no land."

His students also worry that there will be another earthquake. "My students are traumatised and need psychological support," he says.Alvin has joined MSF's psychological education scheme and says: "I know how to teach the children now. I will play games and sing with them. I know that I can make it and that they will have a better tomorrow."

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