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Tsunami disaster – countries in crisis

UNICEF relief supplies arrive

© UNICEF/HQ05-0041/Horner
A cargo plane full of emergency supplies arriving at the international airport in Male, the capital of the Maldives.

MALE, Maldives, 7 January 2005 - A cargo plane full of educational supplies and other emergency relief supplies arrived in the Maldives on Friday. The chartered flight carried more than 100 school-in-a-box kits, 694 basic family water kits, 83 recreation kits, and 260 weighing scales.

The flight was funded by ECHO, the European Commission Humanitarian Aid Office, and dispatched from UNICEF's global warehouse in Copenhagen.

“The current situation is very bad. Life came to a standstill when the tsunamis hit the Maldives. One-third of the country’s population have been gravely affected,” says UNICEF Assistant Representative Tom Bergmann-Harris, adding “one in five islands is without any water supply and one in three schools is damaged or completely destroyed, leaving more than 29,000 children without access to school.”

© UNICEF/HQ05-0044/Horner
More than 100 school-in-a-box kits, 694 basic family water kits, and other relief supplies are unloaded from the plane.
“UNICEF's top priorities over the next few weeks are getting children back to school as soon as possible, and making sure they have safe water and sanitation. We will also work with partners to address psychosocial trauma among children,” said Mr. Bergmann-Harris.

UNICEF plans to set up temporary learning spaces and is trying to get all children back to school by 25 January. The school-in-a-box kits and recreation kits should help provide a sense of normalcy to the many children traumatized by the tsunamis. UNICEF will also assist the government to rapidly distribute the basic family water kits, which contain a collapsible bucket, bars of soap and water purification tablets.

More urgently needed relief supplies are scheduled to arrive in the Maldives in the next few days.




7 January 2005: Emergency relief supplies arrive in Male, the Maldives

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