The UN has asked for a substantial increase in funding for the humanitarian response to Cyclone Idai. ‘The needs are huge. Norway is therefore increasing its support for humanitarian efforts in the wake of the cyclone to a total of NOK 47 million,’ said Minister of Foreign Affairs Ine Eriksen Søreide.
The damage caused by the cyclone is extensive, and Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe are all affected. The UN estimates that nearly three million people are in need of assistance, more than 1.8 million of whom are in Mozambique. Norway is now increasing its humanitarian funding to the region by an additional NOK 24 million, bringing the total to NOK 47 million. These funds are being disbursed to the UN and other humanitarian partners. NOK 17 million of the total is being channelled through the UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF).
‘Norway has a longstanding tradition of providing humanitarian aid to people in need. In addition to the need for lifesaving emergency relief, such as food, shelter and medicines, it is also crucial to protect the most vulnerable people against violence and sexual abuse. Women and children are particularly at risk. Norway will give priority to measures to prevent sexual violence and abuse and to providing medical and psychosocial support,’ said Ms Eriksen Søreide.
The tropical cyclone Idai that hit Mozambique on 14 March also affected Zimbabwe and Malawi. Whole villages have been submerged and extensive damage has been caused to infrastructure and agricultural land. The UN and various humanitarian partners are working flat out to get an overview of those in need and to provide assistance despite huge logistical challenges.
Before the cyclone, Norway had already allocated around NOK 21 million in humanitarian assistance to Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe through CERF.