Relief NGO Gift of the Givers (GOTG) has begun preparing their first batch of humanitarian supplies for Malawian citizens affected by the worst flood recorded in history. Torrential rains have hit most parts of the country and claimed the lives of 200 people. Over 200 000 residents have been left homeless, as aid agencies struggle to cope with the level of displacement.
“At this current stage the main aim is to get the residents fed, dry, and the communities up and running again. Their crops have been badly spoilt if not under water,” said GOTG founder, Dr Imtiaz Sooliman.
The floods which burst the banks alongside the Shire and Ruo rivers, has resulted in health risks. Diseases such as cholera and malaria are prevalent in Malawi and are usually carried by mosquitoes because of the stagnant water. Malawians also need medication supplies as they have lost their entire supply for the month due to the floods.
“The three most important needs of Malawians right now are; the need for food, the need for fertiliser and seeds, and lastly the reconstruction of houses,” said Sooliman.
The NGO has since collected over 300 000 supplies over the last week from the community. Items include rice, maize, tinned fish, biscuits, diapers, medical supplies and blankets for now.
“The citizens of Malawi got so excited when they saw food aid and were so grateful and sent messages to say thank you. South Africans can assist by donating items in kind and dropping off parcels at 45 Noll Avenue in Rylands Cape Town, as well as donating cash or buy food supplies in Malawi directly to support the locals.”
The United Nations World Food Programme, managed to reach nearly 210,000 citizens with more than 1,500 metric tons of food supplies in eight districts and strives to transfer supplies to an additional 160,000 people affected by the floods. VOC (Nabeelah Mohedeen)