Save the Children Hotline News 21 Dec 1999: Venezuela, India, Viet Nam, Kosovo, Angola

Report
from Save the Children
Published on 21 Dec 1999
Venezuela Floods
Torrential rains which hit the northern coastal areas of the country caused extensive flooding and landslides. Over 200,000 people from the country's 23 million population are estimated to have become homeless as a result of the devastation caused. Many, including children, are still reportedly missing.

Save the Children has established contact with professional groups working in the flood-affected areas. Technical support is being provided on the registration of separated children and tracing their families.

India

Orissa Cyclone

The Disasters Emergency Appeal for cyclone victims in Orissa raised over 2 million. An initial assessment of the cyclone's impact on children and their families is now complete and Save the Children is delivering rice, sugar, biscuits, water purifcation tablets, blankets and plastic sheeting to meet the needs of 20,000 children under five and 52,000 young people under 18.

Vietnam

Vietnam is experiencing it's worst floods for 40 years. An estimated 600,000 homes have been affected and agricultural land damaged or destroyed. Many children and their families are stranded, awaiting rescue and support. They urgently need shelter and household supplies. Save the Children is sending 4,000 household kits, each kit contains 2 blankets, cooking pots and a family sized mosquito net to Thua Thien Hua province.

Kosovo

Many families do not have adequate shelter and remain unprepared for the harsh Kosovan winter. Save the Children is distributing warm winter clothes to over 100,000 children and helping 500 families to set up at least one warm room in their damaged houses. Save the children continues to distribute start up kits to schools, the kits include blackboards, chalk and books.

Earlier this year SCF discovered 20 babies in Pristina hospital, they were in a very bad state and some were tied to their cots. SCF set up a playroom equipped with toys, furniture, nappies and baby food and employed staff to care for the babies whilst trying to trace their parents or find foster homes. Eventually 14 of the babies were placed with families, and the remainder with foster parents. At the time there were was no legal framework to guide the fostering of children and there was significant pressure on SCF to send the babies to the US for adoption - or to open an orphanage. SCF resisted and worked with the Centre of Social Work in Pristina, to get the children fostered. This work has laid the foundations for future work on the protection of children and SCF( with the UN authority UNMIK) will now be looking at all issues around adoption and fostering.

Angola

The World Food Programme has recorded a malnutrition rate of 21.5 % amongst the population of Angola. The country remains the worst place on earth for children to live. Save the Children is delivering food aid to over 1/4 million people after a massive registration process. A further 152,000 will receive food in the next 3 weeks.We are also carrying out family tracing work and providing emergency relief kits.