Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka Red Cross Society releases over 1.7 million rupees worth of emergency assistance

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04/06/2014 – Colombo, Sri Lanka: The Sri Lanka Red Cross Society has released over 1.7 million rupees worth of emergency assistance for people affected from flash floods brought in by incessant rains in Kalutara.

As of now 44,000 people living in 9 districts are affected by flash floods. 23 deaths were also reported. (For exact up to date figures for the number of death please contact the Police Media Unit).

Kalutara, Galle, Rathnapura, Gampaha, Kegalle, Colombo, Matara, Kurunegala and Nuwara Eliya are the districts affected.

Kalutara is the hardest hit area where 17,066 people being displaced due to the heavy rains. Roads and bridges are damaged which has hampered relief efforts.

Red Cross has also taken additional steps to distribute water purification tablets as clean drinking water is in short supply. Well cleaning and area cleaning area also underway by volunteers of the Red Cross as most of the clean water sources have been contaminated by flood waters.

As of now, non food relief items consisting of hygiene kits, baby hygiene, kitchen sets, clothes, lanterns, jerry cans, and mosquito nets have been distributed by the Red Cross in Kalutara. First Aid services were also provided to people with minor injuries.

Meanwhile water levels of several major rivers (Gin, Kalu, Walawe) are at spill levels and volunteers of Sri Lanka Red Cross were deployed to inform and evacuate families living in low lying areas of these rivers; if the need arises.

Director General of Sri Lanka Red Cross Tissa Abeywickrama said “Our volunteers have been the first responders assisting communities when a disaster like this happens. They are from these communities itself, hence its easy for them to rally together to help each other.”

The International Federation of Red Cross & Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and other Red Cross organizations are standing by to assist if the situation worsens.

For more information please contact

Naveendra Senaratne – Media Coordinator +94 773 171 087 / naveendra.senaratne@redcross.lk

Mahieash Johnney – Senior Manager – Communications & Humanitarian Diplomacy +94 773 502 156 / mahieash.johnney@ifrc.org | Twitter – @mahieash @SLRedCross