Source: Hong Kong Red Cross
Date: 20 Jun 2008
Tropical Cyclone Nargis struck the South-western of Myanmar on 2 May 2008. The scale of destruction and loss is massive with government figures listing 78,000 people dead and another 56,000 missing. It is estimated that 1.5 million people are left homeless and 2.4 million people are affected.
The rainy season driven has begun to intensify, and people are reporting increasing illness. Diarrhoeal disease, malaria, dengue, respiratory infections and even haemorrhagic fever continue to concern the International Red Cross.
‘The hazards remain and, in the pouring rain that will be with us for months, every effort must be made to prevent a second wave of disaster,’ an in-country health delegate of International Red Cross said.
Clean water, food and good quality shelters are the priorities as well as more boats to carry these items to people in need.
Red Cross Actions
The revised appeal launched by the International Red Cross for approx. HK$329.7 million on 16 May 2008 is now 99% covered.
To respond to the international appeal, the Hong Kong Red Cross (HKRC) has already mobilized HK$14.7 million to support the emergency relief activities including procuring 2,000 shelter kits and 200 first aid kits. To date, an amount of more than HK$16.4 million has been raised from the public in Hong Kong.
As of 16 June, the International Red Cross has provided humanitarian assistance to 302,000 beneficiaries, about 80% of these beneficiaries are in the delta region. An average of 10,000 people per day are being reached.
By 15 June, 77 Red Cross relief flights have landed in Yangon, carrying more than 1,000 tonnes of relief items. Commercial flights with assistance are landing daily in Yangon.
A total of approximately 1 million litre of clean water are being pumped reaching at least 600,000 people in the delta region every day.
The Myanmar Red Cross Society (MRCS) was mobilized to support first aid activities in mobile clinics set by the local health units. They extended psychological support to children and women, feeding the sick and the elderly in the shelters and monasteries that housed affected families.
The International Red Cross also assisted MRCS in providing tracing service, as well as training on dead body management after disasters.
Currently 33 expatriate delegates from the International Red Cross are supporting the relief work in Yangon and the delta.
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