The UK is providing up to £1 million of emergency UK aid and a team of relief workers on the ground to get help to those affected by devastating Cyclone Eloise, Minister for Africa James Duddridge announced today (Tuesday 26 January).
The funding will support the International Organization for Migration (IOM) to help manage camps, provide emergency shelter and accommodation, and improve drainage and road access.
According to reports, 2,400 homes have been destroyed and another 4,700 have been damaged, particularly in the provinces of Sofala, Zambezia, Manica and Inhambane. More than 8,000 people have been forced to flee their homes and are being hosted in 28 accommodation centres. Torrential rainfall is expected over the coming weeks, which may cause more damage on top of that from the cyclone.
Minister for Africa James Duddridge said:
Our thoughts are with those affected by Cyclone Eloise. Mozambique is now having to battle tackling the coronavirus pandemic, coupled with the aftermath of this cyclone. The UK will do all that it can to assist those in need.
Our team of humanitarian experts, working with partners on the ground, will help establish what is needed, and the safest and quickest way of delivering it to the most vulnerable people.
Social distancing is extremely difficult for those living in emergency shelter, increasing the risk of community transmission. As of 23 January 2021, there have been 31,628 confirmed COVID-19 cases in Mozambique and 297 deaths.
The UK purchased a number of core supplies in 2020 in the wake of 2019 Cyclone Idai, which were carefully pre-positioned to help support disaster preparedness. The items include:
- 3,000 family tents, nearly 6,000 emergency shelter kits, 90 plastic rolls, and 12,000 plastic sheets which can help to provide emergency accommodation;
- 6,000 hygiene kits which include basic items such as soap;
- 5,000 kitchen kits, providing basics such as plates for those that have lost their homes; and
- 600 latrine slabs, so people can use the toilet safely and reducing the risk of disease spreading.
The UK is working with the Government of Mozambique to urgently get these supplies to those in need.
Specialist flood risk assessments, compiled by a consortium including the Universities of Reading and Bristol, and funded by the UK Government, have been used to help humanitarians anticipate which areas are likely to be hit the hardest and to plan supplies and staffing. This partnership follows a request by the United Nations following similar UK support during the response to Cyclone Idai.
The UK-funded Start Fund has confirmed it will provide £200,000 to respond to the impacts of Tropical Cyclone Eloise. The UK is a major donor to the Start Fund, a UK-based, NGO-managed fund for smaller, under-funded humanitarian responses.
The Mozambique Red Cross Society (CVM) has received just under £300,000 (CHF 359,689) from the UK-funded Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF), to provide immediate shelter support for 500 households while ensuring the most urgent water, sanitation and health needs of 5,000 people are met.
- Today’s £1 million UK aid funding is from the UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office’s crisis reserve.
- The consortium of organisations working on the flood risk assessments include: the University of Reading, the University of Bristol, ECMWF, Copernicus, HR Wallingford and FATHOM.
- The DREF is a pooled fund managed by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), which provides immediate financial support to National Societies to respond to smaller emergencies and crises.