Summary: CHF 306,365 (USD295, 891 or EUR 202,502) was allocated on 14 December 2009, from the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC)'s Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF), to support the Malawi Red Cross Society (MRCS) in delivering immediate assistance to 1,930 households (9,650 beneficiaries) affected by the earthquake that hit the country on 6 December 2009. The DREF allocation was increased to a total of CHF 591,689 (USD 570,033, or EUR 397,721) on 23 December 2009 to enable the MRCS to implement its revised plan of action following the second earthquake on 20 December 2009. While the DREF bulletin dated 14 December 2009 indicated assistance targeted to 3,000 households (about 15,000 beneficiaries), MRCS revised the target to 6,000 households (about 30,000 beneficiaries) based on the Malawi Government's assessment results.
The main objective of the operation was to provide temporary shelter and basic non-food items (NFI) to the families affected by the earthquake. With the DREF from IFRC, the National Society complimented its government's efforts in assisting 2,867 families through the provision of temporary shelter materials (tents, tarpaulins and shelter kits), jerry cans, laundry soap and mosquito nets.
After the second earthquake on 20 December 2009, the Government of Malawi formally declared a national emergency on 21st December 2009, prompting MRCS to revise its plan for the operation, to focus providing additional shelter and relief needs to displaced families. MRCS immediately requested a shelter specialist to increase capacity on related activities. On 27 December 2009, British Red Cross Society responded by deploying a shelter specialist to Malawi. Assisted by the shelter specialist, MRCS volunteers provide training on shelter construction to the families whose properties were damaged by the earthquake. A local organisation, Feed the Nation also responded by donating 5,000 sachets of fortified meal for distribution to the affected households.