KINSHASA – As hundreds of thousands of people displaced by the sudden eruption of Nyiragongo volcano in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) start returning home, the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has received a USD 150,000 contribution from the Government of the Republic of Korea to help provide them with emergency food assistance.
Nyiragongo, the volcano that looms over Goma in eastern DRC, erupted in the evening of May 22, killing more than 30 people and destroying a number of villages on the outskirts of the town. It is estimated that more than 400,000 people were temporarily displaced following the destruction of their homes, basic infrastructure and health facilities and due to tremors and earthquakes that lasted for days. WFP has already provided emergency food assistance to 146,000 people who were displaced and is now putting in place a longer-term plan to help those who lost their livelihoods or their homes.
“I have seen first-hand the suffering and the resilient spirit of those who were forced to flee for their lives as torrents of lava raced towards the town. I am therefore all the more grateful to the Government of the Republic of Korea for this assistance that will enable us to help those hard hit by the eruption to get their lives back on track,” said Peter J. Musoko, WFP Representative and Country Director in DRC.
The DRC crisis is one of the world’s most protracted complex emergencies. There are 27 million people in the country who are acutely hungry. One in every two children under 5 suffers from chronic malnutrition and out of every three deaths in children under 5, one can be attributed directly to malnutrition.