Healing the Trauma in the First Night of Ramadan

Healing the Trauma in the First Night of Ramadan

ACTNews, BENGKULU – The worshippers began their recitation of the Qur’an on Sunday (5/5) evening by seeking refuge to Allah. Several of the worshippers still stayed inside the Mosque and they read the Quran in accordance with the direction of the Imam who led the Quranic recitation. Similar to last year, Ramadan activities are still conducted in Al-Azhar Mosque, Sungai Serut District, Bengkulu. The coming of Ramadan heals the trauma from the major flood that struck Tanjung Agung a week ago.


Nursima (58) directly went to the female rows. She has put on her prayer garb and her sarong before she left her house. Nursima admitted that she felt really blessed because she can perform Taraweeh in Al-Azhar Mosque. “The mosque was submerged during the flood, and I am really happy that I can pray in the mosque today,” Nursima felt happy as she told this story.


This Ramadan, according to Nursima, is a little bit different. The sorrow from the flood still lingers on her memory, the flood which has also submerged her house on Friday (26/4) evening. For Nursima, gathering with the others and praying together in the Mosque is a method of trauma healing. “I am really happy that I can follow Taraweeh. If I just stay at home, I will be reminded with the flood, and get traumatized,” said Nursima softly.


The disaster that happened on Friday to Saturday evening is still imprinted on her memory. She was one of the residents that had to be evacuated using inflatable rescue boat. According to Nursima, the water level was as high as an adult’s chest. She and the other three members of her family tried to save their belongings first. The Search and Rescue Team evacuated her family and other victims at three in the morning. “We were evacuated to a road intersection with higher ground level,” said Nursima. She intended to fast during the Ramadan even though she was affected by the flood.

Other than Nursima, joy is also shown by Tuti (44). She admitted that she was really happy to pray Taraweeh with her family. “I am happy that I can pray Taraweeh, even though I am still weary from cleaning,” said Tuti. She was also happy that her whole family is safe for Ramadan--even though she was one of the victims of the Flood.

The sheer willpower of the residents in welcoming the Holy Month of Ramadan is also told by Ahmad Saparudin (46), the head of Neighborhood Association and the caretaker of Al-Azhar Mosque. He said that the response of the community in helping to clean the Mosque after the flood is very positive. “Yesterday, there were so many volunteers who helped us to clean the Mosque. There were volunteers from the police force, Indonesian Army, Search and Rescue Team, and many others. There were people cleaning the yard, cleaning the rug. As a result, the Mosque is already cleaned and ready to use for prayer,” said Ahmad.


However, he also witnessed that there are several traumatized residents. Ahmad’s family was evacuated to the Mosque during the disaster because his house is already submerged. Nevertheless, the water level rose and flooded the Mosque. “On three in the morning, the water came in all of a sudden. We went to evacuate and followed by others. We went back to our house the day after the flood struck,” said Ahmad.


Ahmad said that the flood did not affect the communality of the residents. Every single day, during the Ramadan, the residents gather in the Mosque for Iftar and Tilawah. Even after the flood, Ahmad stated that the residents still managed to provide Iftar meals for the worshippers and travelers. “We will take turns in providing food, and we will do that for 30 days,” he said.


As the situation for the resident is getting better, Ahmad also stated that the Mosque still requires proper repair and maintenance after the flood. However, on the bright side, this situation has pushed the residents to work together in harmony. []