Humanitarian Action for Children 2015: Malawi

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Since the beginning of January 2015, Malawi has been experiencing floods due to heavy rains. An estimated 121,000 people have been displaced since the floods hit the southern region of the country, with many families taking shelter in camps established in schools. Over half of those affected are children, and one fifth are under the age of five. The floods have caused extensive damage to crops, livestock and infrastructure including schools and health facilities. The southern districts of Nsanje, Phalombe, Chikwawa, Machinga and Zomba are so far the most affected. Parts of flood affected districts are currently inaccessible to assessment teams and the number of people in need of support, both displaced populations and host communities, is expected to increase. To prevent and respond to disease outbreaks, priority will be given to providing high levels of immunization, increasing insecticide treated nets (ITN) use, and provision of rapid case management for malaria, pneumonia and diarrhea, especially among children affected by the floods. There are growing concerns of protection risks and disruptions in children’s learning. With most of the affected districts already vulnerable to food insecurity, cholera and malaria, children and women in the affected areas require urgent life-saving assistance and families will require continued support to recover from the effects of the floods. Every year Malawi faces a combination of late onset and early cessation of rains as well as prolonged dry spells that result in reduced crop production. Of the 19 high-risk districts, 17 were food insecure in 2014 with families having access to only one meal a day for a four-month period. Over 640,000 people are food insecure. Furthermore, about two thirds of the 28 districts in Malawi are prone to cholera and there is an ongoing need to strengthen control efforts, particularly given the seasonal flooding.

  • Total affected population: 740,000
  • Total affected children (under 18): 399,600
  • Total people to be reached in 2015: 322,486
  • Total children to be reached in 2015: 100,000

2015 Programme Targets


  • 105,000 disaster-affected people and host community members provided with safe water
  • 105,000 emergency-affected persons benefiting from hygiene and sanitation promotion messages


  • 100,000 disaster-affected school children benefit from school temporary structures and supplies (school-in-a-box and recreation kits)

Child Protection

  • 15,000 children and caregivers benefit from psychosocial support
  • Prevention and response plans to address major child protection risks established in 15 districts


  • 100,000 children, young people and women have access to HIV and AIDS prevention, care and treatment during crisis


  • 24,085 children ages 6-59 months with SAM enrolled in OTP and NRU programmes
  • Recovery rate from acute malnutrition for 24,085 targeted children is over 75 per cent


  • 56,000 children and women access essential health services including immunizations
  • 8,000 disaster-affected households receive survival kits
  • 52,000 disaster-affected women of child-bearing age receive key health education