A ShelterBox Response Team is on the ground in Indonesia after a 7.5 magnitude earthquake and tsunami with 20 foot waves devastated the island of Sulawesi.

More than 1,400 people have died and an estimated 66,000 homes have been damaged or destroyed. Many families in Sulawesi are in desperate need of tents, ShelterKits, and water filters.

We are working with the Indonesian government, local Rotary contacts, and other organizations to help families who have lost everything.

Access to the affected area is severely restricted and the full extent of the destruction and damage to homes is not yet fully understood. Our highly trained and experienced Response Team is committed to finding a way to help.

We have aid stored nearby in Malaysia and are working with our contacts to understand any importation restrictions and how we may be able to get it to families in Indonesia.

We have essential items ready to go, like tents, ShelterKits, water filters and blankets. 

This is the latest in a series of earthquakes to hit Indonesia recently. We currently have a team on the Indonesian island of Lombok who have been there for the last month helping families recover from the 6.9 magnitude earthquake which hit in August and left 20,000 people homeless.

ShelterBox USA has a designated fund for the response to the earthquakes & tsunami in Indonesia. If we receive more funds than needed for our response, the excess will be used to support our response to other disasters in Southeast Asia.

Emergency Update: Sulawesi Earthquake & Tsunami


A 6.9 magnitude earthquake hit the island of Lombok on August 5, a significant quake in a series to hit the area.

The response in Lombok is being led by the Indonesian Government.

We’ve got a team of highly-trained volunteers and a member of staff on the ground in Indonesia right now.

The team, consisting of three Response Team Volunteers and a member of staff, is working with local Rotary contacts to deliver aid to families in Lombok who have lost everything in the recent earthquakes.

So far, together with local Rotary groups, we have helped over 360 families across North and West Lombok, in over 80 communities.

In addition to providing tents, tarpaulins, ropes, kitchen sets, blankets, ground sheets, mosquito nets, and solar lights, we have also provided tents to maternity and postnatal clinics.

We are hoping to help many more families over the coming weeks.

The single Rotary Club on Lombok has worked tirelessly since the first quake and their continuous assistance has made our response possible.  They have been delivering life-saving aid that is coming in from Rotarians throughout the region and have been with our Response Team since our arrival, providing the contacts, translation, and transportation needed.




An earthquake happens when pieces of the earth’s surface rub together, causing the ground to shake.


Although the ground we walk on may seem solid, it is actually made of huge pieces of flat rock which together, create a kind of patchwork.

These flat pieces of rock are called plates and are constantly moving, although this usually happens so slowly we don’t even notice.

Sometimes these plates get stuck and pressure builds up until one of the plates is forced to give way – this can cause the ground across a wide area to vibrate violently.


The size of an earthquake is usually measured by a system called the ‘Richter Scale’. Earthquakes that measure below 4 on this scale are unlikely to cause any damage and those below 2 will usually not even be felt.

However, earthquakes above 5 on the Richter Scale will cause damage and those above 7 are considered major earthquakes. These larger earthquakes can result in buildings being destroyed or so badly damaged they are too dangerous to live in.


Aftershocks are earthquakes that follow the largest shock of an earthquake sequence.

They are smaller than the initial, main earthquakes and within 1-2 rupture lengths distance from the mainshock.

Aftershocks can continue over a period of weeks, months, or even years. In general, the larger the mainshock, the larger and more numerous the aftershocks, and the longer they will continue.