Cyclone Freddy, Malawi
On March 10, 2023, tropical cyclone Freddy made landfall in Malawi after forming over the Indian Ocean more than a month before. Freddy hit Southern Malawi in the form of persistent rains accompanied by heavy storms. The impact was far worse than anticipated and the cyclone caused widespread flooding and landslides. The situation was so serious that the President of Malawi declared a state of disaster in the Southern Region.
According to local authorities, at least 476 people have lost their lives, and hundreds more were reported missing. In total, over 490,100 people are displaced with over 500 resettlement camps set up to accommodate the displaced population.
In addition, as of the 17th of March 2023, Malawi has reported a total of 54,340 cases of cholera and 1,671 deaths have been reported since the onset of the Cholera outbreak in 2022.
Incessant rain and strong winds caused catastrophic flash floods and landslides, sweeping away roads and bridges, burying homes in mud, causing a power outage due to fallen power lines, and destroying water systems. The affected communities have also suffered economic loss from destruction of farmland, livestock and household assets.
Islamic Relief is conducting distributions of hygiene kits and community hygiene sessions in both camps and villages, championed by women to ensure women and girls feel safe and comfortable to discuss and learn of hygiene practices.
Islamic Relief is distributing unconditional multipurpose cash grants to support households from affected communities who have suffered economic loss from destruction of farmland, livestock and infrastructure damages.
CARE is conducting water, sanitation, and hygiene training sessions and kit distributions.
CARE is also spearheading the procurement and distribution of over 500 shelter kits and kitchen non-food items (such as cooking utensils). CARE is also distributing dignity kits as women and girls have been greatly impacted, with some losing their daily clothing and being vulnerable to sexual abuse in both camps and host communities
Further, CARE is sensitizing communities on gender-based violence and conducting training on gender-based violence and child abuse management, as well as setting referral pathways.
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