India

Flood water receded but humanitarian response continues

The Assam floods in 2022 have left the affected vulnerable communities in a perpetual state of grief even as the floodwater has receded from the entire region. The impact of the recent floods was huge in terms of loss of human lives, property, and livelihood. Around 197 people have lost their lives due to floods and landslides this year in Assam according to official sources. Realising the gravity of the crisis, the Centre has released Rs 648.80 crore in 2022-23 as disaster assistance to the Northeast State. Union Minister of State for Home Mr. Nityanand Rai said in Rajya Sabha that during the south-west monsoon of 2022, floods and landslides are reported to have caused extensive damage in various districts in Assam.

Lakhs of people in the flood-affected areas of the state were at risk due to excessive property damage, health and food crisis, and on the verge of severe disruption of vital water and sanitation facilities. Therefore, during this emergency period, Caritas India through its team, in collaboration with the government and various non-government organisations and other stakeholders, played a significant role in minimizing the scale of loss and damages through relief work initiatives like the distribution of hygiene kits, food kits and shelter/NFI kit. Reaching a maximum number of people in the furthest regions of the state has been an imperative priority of our relief effort.

Continuing our support to the flood-affected families, Caritas India has reached a population of more than 27,000 individuals effectively. So far, we have distributed 2185 Hygiene Kits, 907 Food Kits, and 1652 Shelter/NFI Kits in three districts, namely, Hojai, Cachar and West Karbi Anglong and are striving to reach even more. Apart from the relief distribution, we are also carrying out hygiene promotion activities in the villages of these districts and have so far cleaned 7 handpumps to ensure that the affected population has access to safe drinking water.

Moreover, we are also supporting the most marginalised families with fund transfers. Selected families will receive fund support where the amount will be deposited in their bank accounts directly. So far we have made more than 100 transfers in the month of July. More than 1000 deserving families will be supported through fund transfers from the affected villages. We will also support communities from the districts of Lakhimpur, Barpeta and Nagaon reaching more than 90 villages altogether in the coming days where we will also provide technical WASH support to the communities with the help of UNICEF. Installation of gender-segregated toilets providing water filters, and distribution of tin sheets are some latest editions to our on-ground relief programme in Assam after diligently assessing the needs of the people affected in the floods.