Red Cross supports hunger-hit Zimbabwe

26 February 2013

The British Red Cross has given more than £80,000 from its Disaster Fund to support the Zimbabwe Red Cross. The money will help improve people’s food security and their access to clean water and sanitation facilities.

The acute food crisis in Zimbabwe is now reaching its peak – about 1.6 million people need help accessing food. In addition, recent heavy rains in the region have triggered floods across Zimbabwe, putting families under additional pressure.

Reducing people’s vulnerability

The British Red Cross’ Disaster Fund contribution will help make people less vulnerable to disease, reduce the distance they must travel to collect water, and increase their resilience to future droughts and food shortages.

In Zimbabwe, the Red Cross is reducing people’s vulnerability by providing training, support, seeds, fertilisers and tools. It is also improving access to safe water and basic sanitation facilities.

Support to southern Africa

In late 2012, when many people in the region were facing chronic hunger, the British Red Cross gave more than £136,980 from its Disaster Fund to support work in southern Africa. This helped fund essentials like food, seeds and tools, as well as an operations co-ordinator and a delegate to the region.

Recently, the British Red Cross sent a team of sanitation experts to Mozambique to help victims of flooding there. Downpours in the country have destroyed houses, schools, health centres and crops, forcing people to leave their homes and leaving them even more vulnerable to food crisis.

As well as short-term interventions in the region, the British Red Cross also supports long-term HIV programmes in Lesotho and South Africa.