Cyclone Winston, Fiji: UNICEF eyewitness report

News and Press Release
Originally published
View original
Scenes of Tropical Cyclone Winston's destruction in Tamavua, Suva, Fiji. © UNICEF/UN010615/Clements

NEW YORK, 20 February, 2016 – Alice Clements from UNICEF Pacific is in Suva, Fiji and experienced Cyclone Winston.

"We certainly felt the impact of Tropical Cyclone Winston in Suva with destructive, howling winds and the sound of rivets lifting from roofs a constant throughout the night. We can't say for sure yet how the rest of the country fared but rapid assessments will be undertaken by the Fiji Government to determine the full impact and what response will be required. It is likely that smaller villages across Fiji will have suffered the most, given their infrastructures would be too weak to withstand the power of a category 5 cyclone. Families may have lost their homes and crops therefore leaving them without shelter, food and a livelihood. There is also considerable risk for those that live by the sea or rivers as flash flooding and river flooding could occur due to heavy rains."

UNICEF is a member of the Pacific Humanitarian Team and will be on standby to provide emergency supplies and additional personnel, if required. UNICEF has pre-positioned supplies in Suva and Nadi including water kits, health kits and education materials such as school tents. If called on to assist, UNICEF will actively support the Fiji Government in leading clusters of agencies working in water and sanitation, education and nutrition, and in child protection.


Download broadcast quality photos and b-roll.

UNICEF promotes the rights and well-being of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.

For more information about UNICEF and its work, visit:

Follow UNICEF on Facebook and Twitter.

For more information or to arrange an interview contact:
Alice Clements UNICEF Pacific, +679 992 5606
Rose Foley, UNICEF New York, +1 917 340-2582