IDESI LEGAL Immigration law practice New ZealandA Wellington lawyer who set up an appeal to send goods to cyclone-devastated Fiji has been inundated with donations.

Kamil Lakshman had hoped to fill one shipping container by March 7, to send to Fiji on March 12, to help the many residents rebuilding their lives after the devastation of Cyclone Winston.

On Thursday night she sealed up that container, jam-packed full of shoes, clothes, food, and books, and got ready to start filling a second. “The response has been overwhelming,” she said.

The appeal had been shared widely  over social media, with people setting up collection points in their own neighbourhoods, making it easier for others to donate. Several schools had also got involved.

Local businesses had pitched in, too, with Hannahs donating 500 pairs of shoes of various sizes, and Thrifty Car Rental loaning Lakshman a van to pick up donations from across the region.

A government department had also donated 150 computer monitors to be shipped to the battered country.

Lakshman said people often wanted to help those hit by disasters overseas, but didn’t always know where to start.

“You don’t know what to do, the task seems enormous … when an initiative like this is there, people can join in and feel like they’re doing something that will make a difference.

“All this makes one realise there’s still hope, and there’s a lot of goodness out there, there really is.”

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