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UN seeks US$3 million to assist flood victims in Guyana

GUYANA, 8 February 2005 - The United Nations system launched a Flash Appeal today in response to the emergency humanitarian situation created by the recent floods that hit Guyana during the second week of January. The floods, the severest in Guyana in over a century, have resulted in loss of livelihoods, disruption of services such as health and education, the threat of disease and the weakening of infrastructure. Over 300,000 Guyanese – nearly half of the total population – are affected. Drainage of the floodwaters has been extremely slow and even now, between 80,000 and 90,000 people still have water in and around their homes.

The US$3 million appeal aims at meeting the immediate needs of the Guyanese population while preparing the way for recovery.

The funding being sought is required urgently to provide the affected population with safe water and adequate sanitation, re-establish basic social services in health and education, and give access to healthy food, especially to vulnerable groups such as pregnant and lactating women, children and the elderly.

In addition, the appeal will help kick start rehabilitation by providing small farming communities with production inputs such as seeds, veterinarian services and equipment to help them rebuild their livelihoods and contribute to agricultural recovery. Funding will also be required to build capacity to prepare for, and respond to, future emergencies in a coordinated manner.  Funds have also been allocated to undertake post-crisis macro-economic assessments and build national expertise in the conduct of these assessments.

Although this emergency may have gone unnoticed in the international arena, the effects of the floods have been devastating. The impact of these floods will be felt for a long time and timely contributions from the international community can make an enormous difference.

“Since the onset of the emergency, UN agencies on the ground, have been working closely with the Government and other partners to provide emergency relief”, said Youssef Mahmoud, United Nations Resident Coordinator in Guyana. “We need to keep supporting the affected population so they can get back on their feet, and actively participate in rebuilding their livelihoods as soon as possible”, he added.

The flash appeal presented today highlights the priorities in humanitarian relief and recovery activities for the next six months to be undertaken by the UN agencies in Guyana in support of, and complementing, the efforts of the Government, the Civil Defence Commission, and national and international non-government organisations.

Summary of requirements by Appealing Agency:

Appealing
Agency
Requirements
in US$
UNDP
700,000
PAHO/WHO
690,000
UNICEF
725,000
WFP
800,000
UNFPA
60,000
Grand Total
2,975,000

Summary of requirements by sector

Sector
Requirements
in US $
Agriculture
250,000
Coordination & Support Services
300,000
Economic Recovery & Infrastructure
150,000
Education
350,000
Food
800,000
Health
800,000
Water & Sanitation
325,000
Grand Total
2,975,000

For more information, please contact:

Officer of the UN Resident Coordination in Guyana
Coordination & Communications Officer, Ms. Margo Singh,
Tel. 011 592 226 4040 Ext 243 or margo.singh@undp.org

Maria Ribeiro, Representative UNICEF Guyana
Tel. 592 226 7083, 227 3662, 225 9993; Fax 592 2265984
mmribeiro@unicef.org

Leslyn Thompson, Communication Officer, UNICEF Guyana
Tel. 592 226 7083, 227 3662, 225 9993; Fax 592 2265984
lthompson@unicef.org


 

 

 

 

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