NEW YORK, February 18, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ — United Nations humanitarian chief, Valerie Amos, has allocated US$10.2 million from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) to support thousands of families displaced by major floods in Malawi and Mozambique.
Extremely heavy rains and floods in January displaced 230,000 people in Malawi, and 50,000 people in Mozambique. Many have lost everything, including their homes.
“The Humanitarian Country Teams in both countries requested CERF funding to kick-start emergency relief efforts. CERF has been part of the collective effort to provide critical, life-saving assistance for those affected by the floods in Malawi and Mozambique,” said Mr. Ignacio Leon-Garcia, Head of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) Regional Office for Southern Africa.
CERF allocated $7 million for Malawi, where displaced families fled with what little they could carry. Many have found shelter in makeshift structures, schools, churches and other public buildings while thousands have been forced to sleep out in the open. Most people still lack access to the most basic facilities.
In neighbouring Mozambique, CERF provided $3.2 million for relief operations for 50,000 people housed in temporary in accommodation hardest hit Zambézia province. Almost half of Zambézia’s population was food insecure before the floods hit, meaning displaced people have extremely limited resources to fall back on.
With these funds, humanitarian partners in Malawi and Mozambique will provide urgent aid including food, shelter, clean water and sanitation services and seeds and tools so that affected farming families have another chance at a harvest and a livelihood this year.
“However, more resources will be needed to build back better, ensuring that the population affected will be more resilient in the near future,” warned Mr. Leon-Garcia.
CERF was established in 2006 to help humanitarian agencies respond rapidly to new or deteriorating humanitarian crises. Since then, CERF has allocated $18.8 million to support relief efforts in Malawi and $30.8 million for aid operations in Mozambique.