Aid agencies in Mozambique call for support for Cyclone Dineo response
“Investing in a response now is an investment for the future”
(MAPUTO, 2 March 2017) - Aid agencies are calling on the international community to assist communities affected by Cyclone Dineo following yesterday’s launch of an appeal by the United Nations.
The agencies work together as the COSACA, a consortium of humanitarian NGOs composed by Concern Worldwide, Oxfam, Save the Children and CARE supporting the Government of Mozambique. The appeal for USD10.2 million will support 150,000 people with lifesaving assistance for the next three months.
Cyclone Dineo made landfall on the coast of Inhambane province, south of Mozambique on the night of Wednesday February 15th 2017. Dineo brought heavy rains and winds of more than 160 kilometers an hour.
According to official estimates, Dineo affected more than 550,000 people, destroying approximately 33,700 homes and damaging another 71,000. An estimated 1,600 classrooms across Inhambane province were damaged or completely destroyed, affecting 5,500 teachers and 160,000 students. Seventy health centres, including 52 maternal health clinics, were also damaged, and 389 government offices.
By far Dineo’s greatest affect will be on communities’ longer term food security. Southern Africa is experiencing its worst drought in 35 years. The cyclone destroyed more than 29,000 hectares of crops including maize, ground nut, cassava and beans. More than 135,000 cashew and coconut trees were also lost, an important source of income for many communities.
Mozambique is one of the world’s most vulnerable countries to natural disasters and climate change. Tropical storms and cyclones are regular occurrences.
Together COSACA and the Government of Mozambique have so far provided emergency kits containing tarpaulins, blankets, mosquito nets and household items, and chlorine tablets for clean water, tents for maternity services in affected health centres, and fuel for emergency water pumping in Inhambane, but more is needed.
“The main needs right now are shelter, livelihoods, health and education,” said CARE Mozambique Country Director Mr. Marc Nosbach. “We need to provide as much support as we can so affected communities can get on with their lives.”
“There’s great need in the world right now, including here in Mozambique. Resources are stretched by prolonged drought, El Nino and now, Cyclone Dineo. Investing in the response now is an investment in resilience for the future,” said Mr. Nosbach.