The La Soufrière Volcano continued to erupt explosively and has now begun to generate pyroclastic density currents - hot (200°C-700°C), ground-hugging flows of ash and debris. The volcano alert level continues to be at the highest level.
A total of 12,775 people have been displaced. Eighty-eight shelters with more than 6,208 occupants are now activated; of this total approximately 1,052 children have been identified as of 22 April 2021. Registration of persons who have sought shelter with family and friends is ongoing, with 6,567 persons registered by 19 April 2021.
UNICEF is part of the Detailed Damage Sector Assessment (DDSA) team, led by the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA), to support the Water, Health, and Agriculture damage assessment together with the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). The water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) assessment was conducted from 16-20 April 2021. The Assessment Report will inform the immediate and medium-term response plan.
Despite the complex operational environment, particularly due to logistical challenges, UNICEF Eastern Caribbean Area Office (ECA) has activated prompt response and technical support to government and partners. Critical WASH supplies have been distributed to reach over 9,000 people and 680 displaced families; life-saving messages are being disseminated via radio to over 30,000 people; and 50,000 face masks, 200 hygiene kits and 30 recreational kits have been delivered to support continuation of child protection services.
The Government of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines has approved 100 per cent waiver of all import taxes and fees for relief supplies, water and barrels from 12 April to 30 June 2021. See details on www.cdema.org.