Red Cross gives Gwanda emergency aid

HARARE - Zimbabwe Red Cross Society (ZRCS), has begun distributing food aid to drought ravaged Gwanda, according to the aid group’s spokesperson, a sign the economic crisis in Zimbabwe is having an alarming effect on poverty. 

Zecheaus Nemadire, ZRCS’s assistant marketing and public relations officer,  said: “ZRCS is targeting four wards in Gwanda North district and a total of 2 100 households will benefit from the planned intervention.”

The Geneva-based charitable organisation is to start gathering and distributing food with the help of fellow charities and allocating donations.

Approximately 35 722 households in Gwanda district are in need of food assistance, according to the Zimbabwe Vulnerability Assessment Committee (ZimVAC) report.

“However, ZRCS and other agencies are working with government to assist the most affected households in the district,” Nemadire said.

“According to the ZimVAC report, food insecurity and food shortages are at their peak between January and April.”

About 2,2 million rural households in Zimbabwe are in need of food assistance.
 
“The food insecurity has affected mostly the southern parts of Zimbabwe that is Matabeleland, Masvingo, parts of Midlands and Manicaland provinces,” Nemadire said.

He said ZRCS was not facing major challenges in its interventions as its partners were responding to their appeal for support to assist the affected households meet their households food needs.

“However, assistance in cash and in kind from Zimbabweans will also go a long way to ensure that the needs of the affected population are met,” he said.

To date ZRCS’ appeals have received support from the IFRC, Finnish Red Cross, Danish Red Cross, Swiss Red Cross, Canadian Government, Swedish Red Cross as well as the Netherlands Red Cross societies.

ZRCS has a couple of programmes which are underway nationwide which includes Food Security and Livelihoods, Disaster Management, First Aid and Nurse Aid Training, Resource Mobilisation, Water and Sanitation and Organisational Development.

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