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Malawi, 10 February 2015: EU visits flood-affected communities

UNICEF Malawi/2015
© UNICEF Malawi/2015
EU Ambassador in Malawi Marchel Gerrmann helps a woman carry a jerry-can with water at one of the camps.

… Pledges additional funds for response efforts

by Felix Malamula

10 February 2015, BLANTYRE, Malawi – The European Union (EU) has committed three million euros towards assisting flood victims in Malawi, Mozambique and Madagascar. This was confirmed by the EU Ambassador in Malawi, during a joint EU-UNICEF visit to some of the camps in Chikwawa district.

“I am impressed with what organisations like UNICEF, Goal Malawi and government officials are doing to help the people affected. We want to encourage everyone to continue with the good work. As you know, Malawi has been hardest hit by the floods, and therefore the country will receive the biggest part of the funds which we have put aside,” Ambassador Gerrmann told journalists immediately after finishing his two-day tour.

The European Union and UNICEF Malawi have been working together since 2013. This partnership invests in a sustainable future for Malawi by promoting the right to effective basic social services. The focus of the integrated programme is on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH).

UNICEF Malawi/2015
© UNICEF Malawi/2015
Mr. Gerrmann washes his face at a tap which was provided with funding from the EU.

When the floods hit Malawi, the EU was quick to respond with US$800,000  reprogrammed from the EU-UNICEF WASH programme. With these funds, the EU is supporting UNICEF in providing the camps with potable water, sanitation facilities and proper use of these facilities. A total of 58,065 people have so far been reached with sanitation services and 30,982 have been provided with safe drinking water in the affected areas. The additional funds that have been committed will go towards finding sustainable solutions to the perennial problem of floods in Malawi.

Chikwawa District Commissioner, Alex Mdooko said a lot of work has been done to ensure that the people in the camps are provided with humane living conditions. He however pointed out that there is more to be done.

“We are grateful to the organisations that are working on the ground. They are doing a great job in helping the people cope through provision of tents for accommodation and other services like education, health, water and sanitation facilities and much more. But we are looking for additional things like more food items, mosquito nets and buckets,” Mdooko said.

According to the latest figures from the Department of Disaster Management Affairs (DoDMA) and the United Nations Office of the Resident Coordinator, about 230,000 displaced people are living in temporary sites. The districts of Nsanje, Chikwawa, Zomba and Phalombe have been the most affected.

 

 
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