. . . as Christian Aid sets aside $1m for  Cyclone Idai victims

CHRISTIAN Aid has set aside $1 million to support victims of Cyclone Idai through provision of food and nonfood items.

Christian Aid is the official relief and development agency of 41 British and Irish churches, and works to support sustainable development, stop poverty, support civil society and provide disaster relief in South America, the Caribbean, Africa and Asia including the Middle East.

Speaking to the Daily News yesterday, Christian Aid country manager Nicholas Shamano said though they have set aside $1 million, the figure could be ramped up depending on needs assessment.

The assistance comes as dozens of aid agencies, non-governmental organisations and individual Zimbabweans have been providing assistance to people in Chipinge, Chimanimani and other areas affected by the cyclone that has left many homeless.

“So far we have been providing relief to people in Chipinge and Buhera where we have been distributing food and other essentials such as hygiene kits and temporary shelter to the affected. We have a target to reaching out to 1 000 households which translates into between 5 000 and 
6 000 people. 

“Of the 1 000, 700 are households in Chipinge and 300 households in Buhera,” Shamano said.

He said once they have done thorough assessments and the markets have been freed up, they intend on setting up a cash programme where people get money to enable them to access what they require on their own.

Shaman added that while aid agencies are providing complementary support to the victims, a lot still needs to be done to bring back the dignity of the people.

“Apart from the food and other essential daily items, these people also need psychosocial support because of what they went through. 

“Others saw people dying before their eyes, some lost relatives and the mere possibility of even losing one’s life is traumatising and that requires extensive counselling to heal,” he said.

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