Lutheran World Relief partner organizations estimate as many as 100,000 people need rescue urgently from where they sought refuge in trees and on rooftops of churches and houses. The United Nations estimates that between 800,000 and 1 million people are homeless due to the floods. Thousands more are feared dead. Only eight military helicopters made available by Neighboring South Africa have the crew, gear and load capacity to make the rescues. They have airlifted 6,000 people from trees and rooftops in several days of shuttle flights.
Making it to dry ground is not the end of the struggle for the flood victims. Food and aid have yet to reach most areas and more rains are expected. There is a growing frustration among stranded Mozambicans and the aid workers in the area at the slow response of the outside world, which has been aware of the crisis for more than two weeks.
LWR and Local Partner Response- LWR is helping partner organizations in flood-damaged areas of Mozambique and South Africa provide emergency food, shelter and stocks of much-needed seeds.
Food: Food to 1,100 families in the Mozambican capital, Maputo, and another town, Matola through Lutheran World Relief's partner, Lutheran World Federation.
Blankets, Kits, and Quilts: A 50 ton shipment of blankets, kits, including health kits, sewing kits, layette kits for newborns, and school kits and quilts has just arrived in Mozambique. The relief supplies, worth $475,000, were requested by Lutheran World Federation late last year for use in non-emergency work but have arrived in this time of greatly increased need.
Neighboring Countries: The South African Council of Churches and the Lutheran Church are preparing food, blankets and temporary shelter for as many as 17,000 flood and cyclone victims in three northeastern provinces of South Africa.
Appeal: A $1.9 million appeal for emergency aid in both countries has been issued by Action by Churches Together. LWR has allocated $30,000 in emergency funds and is appealing for donations for Mozambique and South Africa.