Explosions across Sri Lanka have claimed more than 290 lives and left at least 500 people injured in Colombo, Negombo and Batticaloa. The blasts targeted worshippers celebrating Easter Sunday at various churches in addition to hotels, restaurants and other sites in the South Asian country.
Thirty-six overseas visitors are believed to be among the dead; some are still missing.
Sri Lanka Red Cross volunteers offered first aid and relief to survivors, including at St. Sebastian’s church. To help hospitals cope with the sudden influx of seriously injured patients, Red Cross staff and volunteers helped transfer people from Negombo hospital to Gampaha hospital and relayed information about patients to their families to ease the anguish of relatives and relieve pressure on medical staff.
Volunteers are helping restore contact among family members who have been separated as a result of the tragedy. Teams are offering phone calls and tracing services for the injured.
“Despite the carnage, there was hope. Hope of the true nature of Sri Lankans rising to the brim,” wrote Jagath Abeysinghe, President of the Sri Lanka Red Cross.
Are you looking for a loved one?
If you are looking for a missing relative, you can speak to a caseworker at your local American Red Cross office. Please find your nearest chapter here and enter your zip code.
For inquiries concerning U.S. citizens missing in Sri Lanka, please contact the U.S. Department of State, Office of Overseas Citizens Services, at 1-888-407-4747 and http://www.usa.gov/directory/federal/overseas-citizens-services.shtml.
For updates, follow: @SLRedCross, @IFRCAsiaPacific