Sincerely Let Her Go

Mother is everything for Ika (14 yo). Mother can make her feel more comfortable and safe. However, after the earthquake and tsunami hit Central Sulawesi on Friday, September 28, 2018, there is no more figure of a mother for Ika.

Ika and her cousin were at the market to buy some fishes on that day. They walked down Talise beach and still able to meet her mother. Unfortunately, that was her last time to see her mother.

“I asked Mom where the fish seller is. She pointed at one place. I am still able to smile at her, but she did not see and did not smile back at me,” Ika said.

After that, she decided to go from the beach to the house of her cousin.

“When I was talking with my cousin, suddenly the land was shaking. We ran to Diponegoro street. Then I met my family there. We continue to run to Donggala Kodi area,” she told about her struggle at that time.

One day after the gripping situation on that Friday night, Ika finally met her father and her siblings. Then, they stayed in one of family’s house at Donggala Kodi. However, Ika’s mother still cannot be found until today.

“My father has searched my mom. He was searching until the last point of the tsunami-affected area. He found dead bodies of people, but not my mother. Now he has given up because he couldn’t find her. But I still believe that my mother still alive,” she said sadly.

After the loss of her mother, Ika lived at the evacuation post with father and her siblings. Even though has to stay in the emergency tent, she still can get basic needs such as foods and clothes. She is thankful for that. 

“We usually eat instant noodles here. We also eat rice if there are some stocks,” she explained.

Ika is one of registered child of Wahana Visi Indonesia (WVI) Area Program (AP) of Sigi-Palu-Donggala (Sipado) in Central Sulawesi. She has been joining into WVI activities since 2017. She still remembered how WVI staff asking for permission to her parents to make her as a child representative in Palu.

According to Helda, one of Field Facilitator WVI of AP Sipado who is always interacting with Ika and her family said Ika often joins to WVI’s activity. She also involves being a peers educator in Child Study Group.

“My friends and I usually teach the children near our house on Thursday evening,” said her.

Since she lived in evacuation post, Ika could not play with her friends anymore. Some of them are living in the same evacuation post area, even though others have lost after the earthquake and tsunami happened. For now, Ika has more interaction with new people in evacuation post.

Until now, Wahana Visi Indonesia is still trying to search about the number of registered children in AP Sipado. More than 3.600 people mentioned as a registered child in the AP Sipado.


Written by: Putri ianne Barus, Field Communication Officer Wahana Visi Indonesia