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Uganda, 8 May 2013: UNICEF responds to Kasese floods disaster

KAMPALA, Wednesday, 08 May 2013 - The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) today announced it has provided a wide range of emergency supplies to help alleviate the suffering of thousands of vulnerable people affected and displaced by large-scale flooding in Kasese District over the last few days. UNICEF was the first of two multinational organisations to respond to the emergency thus far, along with the Uganda Red Cross.

Currently, an estimated 3,965 households (25,445 people) have been displaced in Kasese Municipality, majority (60 per cent) of who are children and women.

Consequently, Kasese, Nkaiga and Ibanda Primary Schools have been converted into settlement camps for displaced persons.

UNICEF – which is working with the Office of the Prime Minister and other partners to respond to the disaster – has provided emergency non-food items (NFIs) including 300 twenty-litre jerry cans, 10 tents, 100 tarpaulins, and three medical kits to ease the plight of the flood victims.

The agency is also providing much-needed water purification tablets and 500 NFI kits this week. The NFI kits include blankets, cooking utensils, washing soap and tarpaulins for temporary shelter.

UNICEF Emergency and Field Co-ordinator in Uganda, Philip Gerry Dyer, says water, sanitation and hygiene remains one of the major challenges facing the displaced population.

“We are concerned that lack of access to clean water, poor sanitation and hygiene practices within the camps may lead to disease outbreaks, which is why we are airlifting in cholera kits from our global supply hub in Copenhagen as part of our emergency supplies to the district,” said Dyer. The cholera kit contains a wide range of medical supplies – including medicines, syringes, surgical gloves and other equipment suitable for handling diarrhoeal diseases. One cholera kit is designed to treat 100 severe and 400 moderate cases.

The flood situation in Kasese started at the beginning of the month of May, when heavy rains in the mountainous district caused two rivers, Nyamwamba and Bulemba, to burst their banks, leading to the worst flooding in the area since 1976.

Of the 29 sub-counties in Kasese, Kilembe, Bwesisumbu, Karusandara, Maliba, Kitswamba, Bugoye and Kyarumba are the most affected, with Nyamwamba and Bulemba divisions and the entire Kilembe Valley (Acholi Quarters, Kizungu, Nyakasanga, Base Camp, Kanyangeya, Kamulikwizi and Kanyaruboga) - where the River Nyamwamba passes – being most severely challenged.

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For more information, please contact: 
Anne Lydia Sekandi, 
Partnerships Specialist, 
UNICEF Kampala
0 417 171 112
mailto:1alsekandi@unicef.org

About UNICEF

UNICEF works in more than 190 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments. For more information about UNICEF and its work visit: http://www.unicef.org

 

 
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