UNICEF joins efforts to mitigate impact of Tropical Cyclone Lusi in Vanuatu
Suva, Fiji, 21 March 2014 – Two UNICEF staff based in Vanuatu are part of the humanitarian team assessing the impact of Tropical Cyclone Lusi, which impacted Vanuatu between 10 and 13 March.
The cyclone is estimated to have affected the lives of up to 20.000 people in Vanuatu, leaving 10 dead and a trail of destruction to houses and agricultural land in 5 provinces in this Pacific island nation of 225.000 people.
The Government of Vanuatu had in place well organised preparations and plans, and has convened committed humanitarian partners for the response, including UNICEF. Responding to the situation UNICEF has released supplies for emergency health response and 2,000 sachets of oral rehydration salt for immediate delivery to the most affected provinces of Penama, Sanma and Torba.
Assessing the latest information from Vanuatu, UNICEF’s Representative for Pacific Island Countries, Dr. Karen Allen, said:
“Children are always at the centre of our support to Pacific partners. I have been informed by our office in Vanuatu that Provincial emergency operations centers in the five most affected provinces have been activated and that detailed damage assessment has been initiated. This is essential for us to get a full picture of the needs of those affected so that we can best support urgent relief efforts, coordinated by Government, and work to prevent potential outbreaks of water borne diseases due to the many reported floods.”
UNICEF remains on standby to provide additional support to the Government of Vanuatu to respond to the impact of TC Lusi.
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