CERF allocates close to $ 1.2 million in response to severe flooding in Namibia

CERF in Action - Rapid Response

21 April 2011: CERF allocates $1.2 In response to flooding triggered by the heaviest recorded rainfall ever in the country, CERF has allocated some $1.2 million for humanitarian response in Namibia.

The World Health Organization (WHO), United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) will receive some $500,000 to bolster emergency response in the areas of health and nutrition. Some $350,000 has been allocated to UNICEF for the strengthening of emergency response in the water, sanitation and hygiene and education sectors. UNFPA will use some $250,000 for emergency response in the protection sector. Finally, the World Food Programme (WFP) will receive some $65,000 to strengthen their emergency food distribution scheme.

Flooding in Namibia occurs annually in the north due to heavy rains, flat terrain and river inflows from neighbouring Angola and Zambia. This year, the flood situation in northern Namibia has been exacerbated by heavy rainfall, which normally does not occur in this region.

Previously, the worst recorded floods were in 2009, affecting an estimated 350,000 people. However, according to the Namibian Hydrological Services, the heaviest rainfalls ever have now been recorded in 2011, resulting in severe flooding. Water levels are reported at 30 to 40 centimetres higher than they were in 2009. In response, the Government of the Republic of Namibia has declared a state of emergency. It is estimated that 100,000 to 200,000 people have been affected, including 60,000 people that have been displaced.

The floods have displaced people in six regions of northern Namibia. There are health concerns as cases of cholera have been reported in southern Angola. While the findings of the joint Government of Namibia/UN rapid needs assessment from 5 to 9 April are not yet finalized, preliminary results indicate that women and children are most seriously affected. Hundreds of schools have been closed, and many communities have lost their harvests.

The Government of the Republic of Namibia has identified food, health and logistics as its primary areas of intervention. Other urgent areas of needs for displaced populations include water, sanitation and hygiene services and non-food items.

[Last update: 03 May 2011]

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