Response to Hurricane Irma: Cuba Situation Report No. 19 - Office of the Resident Coordinator (12/10/2017)

Report
from UN Country Team in Cuba
Published on 12 Oct 2017

Highlights

  • A month after Cuba was hit by Hurricane Irma, authorities continue to prioritize the care of the affected population and the recovery from the damage inflicted.

  • The banking system continues granting low interest loans to those affected in the municipalities most impacted by the hurricane.

  • Institutions and workers participated in a massive mobilization this weekend to support work in the agricultural sector, the recovery of damaged public housing and facilities, and cleaning and sanitation tasks in some of the affected territories.

Situation overview
A month after Hurricane Irma hit the northern coast of Central and Western Cuba, priority actions in the most affected provinces include: food distribution, the free delivery of humanitarian aid donated to the country, subsidized sales of basic necessities, the rehabilitation of damaged housing and education and health centers, and the planting of short-cycle crops to compensate for the losses of other crops.

Humanitarian Response

National Authorities

The banking system continues granting low interest loans to those affected in the most impacted municipalities for purchasing building materials to repair and rehabilitate their homes.

The First Vice President of the Cuban Councils of State and Ministers visited affected areas in the Gibara Municipality in the eastern province of Holguín, where the primary damage was concentrated in the housing and agriculture sectors.

The Head of the Eastern Strategic Region visited affected areas of the municipalities of Nuevitas, Minas, Sierra de Cubitas and Esmeralda, the four most impacted in Camagüey Province. During a visit to Cienfuegos, he highlighted actions to boost the local production of building materials.

In Ciego de Avila Province, the Defense Council allocated part of the donations received by the country to maternal care centers, nursing homes, and hospitals, among other public institutions.

International Cooperation

The Japanese Mitsubishi Corporation announced the delivery of 22,693 Euros to the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment of Cuba to support relief and recovery efforts in the areas affected by Hurricane Irma.

Aid from Venezuela destined for the most affected provinces arrived at Carúpano Port in Las Tunas Province. The load includes housing modules, trucks, and construction equipment.

The United Kingdom donated US$1.6 million to assist Hurricane Irma victims in accessing clean water, health services, and shelter as well as hygiene promotion. The donation is being processed through the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

The Government of Canada approved over CA$990,000 in funding to contribute to the recovery following the hurricane, which is being processed through Oxfam Canada, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, and the United Nations System in Cuba as a contribution to the Action Plan in Response to Hurricane Irma. In addition, the Quebec government will finance initiatives in Cuba through Collaboration Santé internationale, Oxfam Quebec and projects of the health sector of the Action Plan of United Nations System in Cuba.