Almost 850,000 people – around half of whom are estimated to be children – have been affected by severe flooding in Malawi and Mozambique, with the numbers set to rise as Cyclone Idai moves west and the impact of the cyclone becomes clearer, UNICEF warned today.
In Zimbabwe, early estimates from government sources in Chimanimani District in Manicaland, put the numbers affected by the cyclone as approximately 1,600 households (8,000 people). Said UNICEF Regional Director for Eastern and Southern Africa, Leila Pakkala:
Hundreds of thousands of children have already seen their lives turned upside down by the devastating floods, and now Cyclone Idai has brought further suffering to families in its path. Many children will have lost their homes, schools, hospitals and even friends and loved ones. UNICEF is on the ground working in close coordination with respective governments and humanitarian partners from three countries to scale up our response and respond to the immediate needs of affected children and their families.
UNICEF is working with partners to support the Governments of the affected countries to provide life-saving interventions to meet the needs of children and women impacted by the cyclone and floods. The response will include Health, with a focus on cholera response and prevention; Education, to minimize service disruption and enhancing safe access to schools; Protection, catering particularly to the needs of internally displaced persons (IDPs); WASH, to ensure access to clean and safe water, increased use of sanitation facilities and hygiene promotion and; Nutrition, focusing on preventing under-five mortality attributable to malnutrition. UNICEF is appealing for US$ 20.3 million to support the response in the three affected countries.
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