África – Flood in the Sahel: 8 out of 10 children need immediate help
Fides Agence, 09/08/2012 Niamey, Niger.
Mali, Niger and Senegal are currently the countries most affected by the floods that are occurring in the Sahel. The food crisis due to the recent drought, a cholera epidemic and the refugee crisis in Mali, more than 336,000 people, of whom 80% are children, have led to a humanitarian emergency that requires immediate action . The damage caused by heavy rains are impeding the future of hundreds of families who, in addition to the effects caused by drought and food emergency in the region, have lost crops that allowed them to live in the coming months. Cultivated land are completely flooded and crops were lost. The emergency situation is stronger for children: 8 out of 10 need shelter, food and clothing.
In Niger, child malnutrition due to drought is very high. The recent floods have mainly affected the southwest of the country, Dosso, Tillaberi and the capital Niamey. Only in the Dosso region have been destroyed 1,200 houses, 1,273 farms and 989 severely injured. The international organization Plan has made an initial distribution of emergency aid to 1,000 families, mosquito nets to prevent malaria, blankets and food to cope the food emergency. In Mali, the August rains have particularly affected Baroueli, one of the poorest areas of the country, where people eat and sell that little getting cultivar. The water has destroyed homes, farmland, livestock, and commercial activities in the area. After the collapse of 1,800 houses, over 10,000 people have been left homeless and need immediate help.
In Senegal, the most affected areas are the central and western part, including Dakar, the capital. Rubble and debris accumulated building materials in urban areas have created large areas of standing water that increase the risk of malaria, skin diseases and diarrhea, especially among children. For small infected, Plan together with the authorities of the country, is organizing a series of subsidies for the distribution of tents, food, hygiene items, as well as the creation of safe environments. (AP)