Madagascar: Cyclones/floods - Situation Report No. 7

This report has been prepared by the OCHA support mission in Madagascar. It is based on information provided by the National Office of Disasters and Risks Management (BNGRC) of the Government of Madagascar, UN Agencies, IFRC, NGOs, the Red Cross and media reports.


Although flood waters have receded in many areas, humanitarian operations continue, particularly in previously inaccessible areas and those areas most affected by floods and cyclones. Humanitarian partners continue to deliver emergency relief items, while simultaneously undertaking further assessments to determine the full humanitarian impact of the year's cyclone season.

- The most recent assessments from the National Bureau for Risk and Catastrophe Management (BNGRC) from 17 April indicate a total number of 188,331 people affected by cyclones Indlala and Jaya in eight regions: Diana, Sofia, Sava, Analanjirofo, Vatovavy Fitovinany, Atsimo Antsinanana, Atsinanana and Aloatra Mangoro. The number of deaths has almost doubled with 150 people reported dead. Thirty are still missing and 126 injured.

- According to the BNGRC and the Ministry of Agriculture, the impact of this year's storms on agriculture has been more devastating than previously reported, with 76,105 hectares of crop fields destroyed. In terms of communication facilities, 103 bridges are damaged.

- In Sofia region (northwest), air deliveries of food and non-food items with a 2.5 tonne capacity helicopter are underway. The operation is supported by trucks from the Civil Protection Corps (CPC) and the Malagasy Army (ULM). Access to previously inaccessible areas and new reports from local authorities has led to an increase in the total number of flood- and cyclone-affected persons: 83,532 persons (11,500 families).

- The situation of flood victims in urban and peri-urban areas of Antananarivo has greatly improved. The latest figures from the BNGRC (19 April) report that 937 persons remain in 16 camps. Three camps have been closed since last week, and 282 people have found shelter with family, relatives or friends.

- The Flash Appeal for Madagascar has been revised and will be released shortly.

- The updated Flash Appeal includes projects with total budgets amounting to US$ 18,859,303. Of this, US$ 5,664,885 has been covered through fundraising with international donors, Agency unearmarked funds, and the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF). A funding gap of US$ 13,194,418 remains.

- The Special Operation in Antsohihy has allowed so far the distribution of 77mt of food and other relief items to 8,215 beneficiaries. The SO will continue distribution out of Ambanja.

- On 26 April, dr. Jean Louis Robinson, Ministry of Health and Family planning visited the SO area accompanied by Gianluca Ferrera, WFP MAG's DCD, and Bruno Maes, UNICEF's Representative.


1. Health

Health partners continue to respond to the basic health needs of the affected populations. Three New Emergency Health Kits (NEHK), to cover the needs of 10,000 people during three months, have been pre-positioned for distribution in the Antsohihy and Ambanja districts. In Antsohihy, partners and regional health authorities have agreed that these kits will be used to serve the affected populations without charge.

2. Nutrition

- Southeast: A nutritional programme targeting 17 communities in Nosy Varika and Manjary in the southeast is well underway. Four mobile teams are required to cover the targeted area and recruitment of mobile team leaders has been completed. Training material and relevant tools are currently being developed by an international nutritionist while procurement of therapeutic food and drugs and logistics arrangements have been finalized.

- South: Since the beginning of the programme in September 06, 838 severely malnourished children have been identified and admitted to the therapeutic programme. Twenty-five percent of the children had severe medical complications and were treated in in-patient feeding centres. Seventy-five percent of the children received outpatient treatment. The recovery and death rates of the therapeutic program was 81 percent and 3.8 percent, respectively. In addition, more than 5,610 moderately malnourished children have been admitted to the programme.

3. Food Security

The extensive agricultural and livestock losses reported by the BNGRC could lead to increased food insecurity, particularly in the northwest. WFP is undertaking sectoral food insecurity assessments beginning this week to determine the severity of food insecurity in the most affected areas in the northwest. These assessments will mainly be carried out in isolated areas that were cut-off from partners until the helicopter operation to deliver humanitarian assistance began.

4. Water and Sanitation

Since the beginning of the field response, the following WASH supplies have been distributed to several affected regions, with a particular focus on Sofia region and the Ambanja district. In Sofia, 988 families in the districts of Befandriana, Antsohihy, Bealanana, Analava and Port Berge have received WASH supplies (water purifying product, soap, buckets, jerry cans). During the first helicopter distribution on 21 April, WASH supplies were delivered to 345 families, and a WASH specialist trained 31 community agents on how to use the water purifier product Sureau. Quality control of surface water and tests of the efficiency of Sureau on turbid water were also conducted. In Ambanja, 218 affected families in ten municipalities received WASH supplies.

Since the launching of the WASH cluster lead, three meetings have been held with actors from Government, UN agencies, World Bank, International and national NGOs as well as bilateral partners. Minimum standards in WASH based on international norms with adaptation for the specific Madagascar situation have been defined. A checklist for specific WASH evaluation has been established, and 3 priority regions and 12 districts have been identified for a WASH-specific evaluation mission.

6. Non-Food Items

In addition to the WASHE supplies mentioned above, essential non-food items (timbales, blankets, water filters) were delivered via helicopter to 688 affected families in the isolated municipalities of Antsakabary and Matsoandakana in the Befandriana district between 20 and 24 April. Three additional trucks from the Government's Civil Protection Corps delivered blankets and well-cleaning supplies to Antsohihy on 21 April.

7. Education

Current UNICEF interventions in the four regions of Diana, Sava, Sofia and Analanjirofo are addressing the needs of 93,400 school children in 467 primary schools (331 partially destroyed and 136 completely destroyed). In Sofia region, according to the Regional Director of National Education, 208,714 out of 255,269 school children were able to return to school after the Easter Break. Community mobilisation/sensitising activities continue to facilitate children's return to school.

UNICEF continues to distribute notebooks, pens and pencils, plastic sheeting for damaged and destroyed schools, tents, and WASHE supplies to schools in the northeast and northwest.

8. Access and Logistics

Eighty percent of the directly affected population in the Ambanja district (Diana region) can be reached only by airlift. To a lesser extent, 11,081 directly affected people or 13% of total number of directly affected people in three districts (Befandriana, Bealanana and Port Bergé) of Sofia are affected. Since 20 April, distribution efforts to these isolated communities have been greatly increased due to the first rotations of the WFP helicopter, which has a transport capacity of 2.5 to 3 tonnes. Each flight will carry "relief kits" put together by UNICEF/WFP. These kits include food (rice, dry beans and oil) and light NFIs, such as soap, kitchen items, medical kits, mosquito nets, blankets and water purifier. As of 24 April, the equivalent of 4,5 tonnes of NFI items and 34 tonnes of food were delivered to 688 families in two municipalities (Antsakabary and Matsondakana) in the Befandriana district. On site for 2 to 3 weeks (72 flight hours), the WFP/UNICEF helicopter will strongly boost relief response in all sectors.

At the same time, more regular arrivals of supplies by air, boat and road are ensuring adequate stocks of essential non-food items in both the Antsohihy and Ambanja bases.


- The first official WASH Cluster lead meeting led by UNICEF was held on 23 April with more than 16 partners, including Government entities, UN Agencies, the World Bank, international and national NGOs, and bilateral partners. A technical meeting is expected to follow this week.

- The Health cluster led by WHO has been operational for two weeks.

- Regional authorities in Sofia have provided WFP and UNICEF with offices to accommodate their staff members and facilitate humanitarian activities and coordination.

- Ultra Light Planes from the Malagasy Air Force, supported by the French Cooperation, have taken position in Antoshihy. They are facilitating assessments and distribution in isolated and inaccessible areas. Their use drastically helps reducing the cost of helicopter use for distributions. The Civil Protection Corps staff also participates in the assessments. A very satisfactory experience.

- UNICEF, OCHA and UNDP, working closely with the BNGRC, the Prime Minister's Office, and regional authorities, have financed the deployment of a helicopter for assessments in Diana and Sofia regions. This helicopter supports the activities of the two operational bases in the regions.

The Resident Coordinator's Office is in close contact with the humanitarian community in Madagascar and will revert with further information as it becomes available. This situation report, together with further information on ongoing emergencies, is also available on at

Contact details:

Colonel Jean Rakotomalala: Executive Secretary of BNGRC/CNS: Tel: + 261 20 22 594 50 Fax : + 261 20 22 594 51 E-mail : - -

Dr. Leonard Tapsoba, WHO Representative and RC, a.i.: + 261 32 03 30 300

Ms. Krystyna Bednarska, WFP Representative and Chair of the UN Theme Group on Disaster Prevention and Management: +261 20 22 315 72

Mr. Bruno Maes, UNICEF Representative: + 261 33 11 399 36

Mr. Benoit Kalasa, UNFPA Representative: + 261 22 226 57

Mr. Jérémie Toussaint, Support to coordination, Office of the Resident Coordinator: + 261 32 074 66 68

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