The 10th Anniversary of the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami Marks the Inception of Sahana

“The beaches are purely white, the waves washing sandcastles away on the way out to the open sea, while the inhabitants of this paradise; that in daily day life is known as part of the Indian Ocean, are in a hurry to entertain the hundred of thousands of tourists that each year return to enjoy the sea, while their children run around to play in the sand.”

Today it is ten years since the 2004 tsunami struck ten countries in South Asia, and around 280,000 people from all over the world lost their lives. The devastation was enormous, and for years the communities throughout the region have struggled to rebuild itself.

We feel today along with the hundreds of thousands – if not millions of people, of which this day is a constant reminder of the loss of their loved ones ten years ago.

In the stern wave of this disaster came the idea of creating a disaster management software product based on free and open source software. As in so many other tragic situations where human intuition and creative power is expressed, this was the beginning of Sahana Software Foundation.

While this event gives us a moment to reflect on, we need to remind ourselves about the millions of people who are affected by disasters around the world every year. And as organisations and emergency managers have experienced through the past decade, disaster management has changed since 2004, becoming more and more community focused and data driven. Sahana Software Foundation will continue to strive to be at the front of these developments.

With the highest consideration and reverence,
Martin Thomsen

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