Myanmar

Myanmar: As DEC agencies gain further access to affected areas they call on the British public for more support

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DEC agencies and their partners warn that more support is required in order to reach the tens of thousands affected by the devastating cyclone. Agencies are on the ground now distributing vital supplies to thousands in affected areas, but much more is required.

'Donations of over £5 million have been received and it's vital that people continue to support the DEC Appeal,' said Brendan Gormley, Chief Executive, DEC, 'Our DEC agencies and their partners are on the ground now helping thousands in desperate need of water, food and medical supplies. We can't let these people down and we're relying on the generous support of the British public to help us to continue this life saving work.'

Currently most people are drinking the same water which carries hundreds of bodies, putrefying dead animals, human waste, as well as industrial and residential debris. Merlin and Save the Children's teams are already treating small children for diarrhoea and are expecting to see hundreds more people affected.

Paula Sansom, Merlin's Emergency Response Programme Manager for health who is in Laputta now, said: 'Diarrhoea has already begun to take hold and without proper sanitation could infect entire communities. Heavy rains are also expected which will add to the devastation. It is vital that we move now, and we move quickly.'

Action Aid's partners have distributed relief to 44 villages. Staff on the ground are moving survivors from the islands by boat and truck to camps or shelters. By Saturday afternoon, 800 people had arrived at camps at Pathein and Laputta and were receiving food and medical support.

The Red Cross expects 10 aid flights of medical and shelter supplies to arrive in Myanmar by Monday (12 May).

World Vision has so far helped almost 78,000 people living in the Yangon area, providing rice and water and other relief items.

To make an urgent donation to its Myanmar (Burma) Cyclone Appeal. Donate online: www.dec.org.uk or call: 0870 60 60 900.

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