CARE manages evacuee collection centers in Mozambique

Hundreds remain stranded as flood waters begin to recede
Contact: Amy Lynn O'Toole, (404) 681-4579 ext. 453

ATLANTA (February 29, 2000) - The international relief and development organization CARE now is managing two major collection centers in the district of Govuro for rescued flood victims in central Mozambique. CARE also is helping to shelter and feed 3,000 people in a third assembly point - an elevated area that has become a virtual island amidst the high flood waters - in Nova Mambone.

"Now that the waters are beginning to recede somewhat, the hundreds of people who remain stranded are finding places to take refuge," explains Patrick Sayer, who helps oversee CARE's programs in Mozambique. "People appear to be in relatively good health, though obviously they're quite hungry."

While helicopter crews continue to fly food and rescue missions, CARE has assumed the management of the two centers housing hundreds of people in the Inhambane Province along the south bank of the Save River. CARE is managing the reception, feeding and shelter of people rescued from the floods, which are the result of a recent cyclone and heavy seasonal rains. CARE also is working to provide clean water and sanitation facilities. Newly arrived medicines, large-capacity tents, clothes and blankets are being distributed throughout the centers.

CARE also is providing support to a third collection center, a Catholic mission, in the district capital of Nova Mambone - now surrounded by flood waters and accessible only by air. The floods severely affected thousands of people living in Nova Mambone along the Save River, which spilled over spreading flood waters some 12 miles out in both directions. Relief for the center's stranded population of 3,000 people arrived yesterday in the form plastic sheeting and tents and 35 sacks containing a mixture of dried milk, sugar and maize enriched with vitamins.

"CARE is playing a critical role in coordinating with the airport in Vilankulos and other aid agencies to deliver food and supplies to the various collection points," adds Sayer. "CARE also is acting as the central point of communication between the Catholic mission and the outside world. Fortunately, both CARE and the mission are equipped with satellite phones so CARE can relay information from the mission back to the World Food Program."

About CARE

CARE is one of the world's largest private relief and development organizations, with projects in more than 60 countries. CARE began working in Mozambique in 1986 to help people affected by civil war. Since then, CARE has continued to distribute food and offer other emergency assistance. It has expanded its development work to include small economic activity development, agriculture and natural resources, and health and water.