Red Cross responds to flood crisis in Africa

Report
from Irish Red Cross
Published on 26 Sep 2007
More than a million people across Africa are facing hunger, hardship and homelessness as a result of catastrophic flooding that is sweeping across the continent, according to the Red Cross which is appealing for funds to deal with the crisis.

Emergency funds have already been provided by the Irish Red Cross to help pay for disease prevention and hygiene promotion efforts as the risk of disease is growing due to large quantities of dirty water in areas where people and livestock are struggling to survive..

David Andrews, Chairman of the Irish Red Cross outlined the three priorities.

"We are growing increasingly concerned about the spread of waterborne diseases, as well as malaria due to increased breeding of mosquitoes in stagnant water, the destruction of latrines and damage to water supplies, and the fact that crops have been washed away."

Appealing for Irish people to donate funds, Mr Andrews said that the Irish Red Cross has already sent €25,000 to Uganda, one of the most severely affected countries and also €25,0000 to Ethiopia. They are just two of the 17 countries where 200 people have died and 650,000 people have already lost their homes.

This is the worst flooding in decades for both the East and West of the Continent, with flooding beginning in the East as early as June, normally the dry season.

"We need support from people in Ireland to pay for urgently needed goods such as tents and clean water, as well as medical aid kits to help treat the injured and sick," stated Mr Andrews. By providing water purification tablets and new wells to 10,000 households and the construction of 800 communal latrines within the camps for displaced persons, the Red Cross will be helping to reduce the incidence of diseases among at least 20,000 households.

Donations are urgently needed

Please make an online donation or call 1850 50 70 70.

Send Cheque and postal orders made payable to: Irish Red Cross Africa Floods Appeal, 16 Merrion Square, Dublin 2.