Canada offers swift response to Sierra Leone following deadly mudslide.
Deadly mudslides in Sierra Leone’s capital last week has destroyed whole neighbourhoods and left thousands of already vulnerable residents homeless and exposed to disease.
Nearly 500 people were killed and at least 600 more remain missing more than one week after the catastrophe. Close to 6,000 people were directly affected by the mudslides, having either lost a family member, seen their homes destroyed or been injured in the disaster. Initial reports show that children and women are the most affected.
A quick intervention, thanks to $275,000 from the Canadian Humanitarian Assistance Fund, will allow CARE Canada to reach approximately 9,000 survivors, 7,300 of whom are women and girls.
The mudslides occurred in one of the poorest part of Freetown, consisting mainly of shanties. What little access to the basic necessities the area had has completely collapsed, resulting in a lack of safe drinking water and sanitation services, increasing the risk of an outbreak of highly communicable diseases such as cholera, dysentery or typhoid.
CARE, a member agency of the Humanitarian Coalition, will distribute emergency kits containing blankets, flashlights, towels and hygiene items to 300 affected households; provide 9,000 people with 7.5 litres of potable water each for 60 days; offer unconditional cash transfers to 150 of the most vulnerable households; and conduct a campaign promoting proper health and hygiene to prevent the spread of waterborne disease.
CARE’s response will focus on the needs of women and girls and in particular families with totally destroyed homes and women-headed households.
The Canadian Humanitarian Assistance Fund is a joint mechanism between the Humanitarian Coalition, its member agencies and Global Affairs Canada.