CHF 275,993 was allocated from the IFRC’s Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) on 14 February, 2012 to support Malawi Red Cross Society in delivering assistance to some 6,159 beneficiaries.
Towards the end of 2011, heavy rains were experienced across Malawi leading to flash floods that caused destruction of houses, schools and other infrastructures. The rains affected the central, northern and southern regions of the country with Nsanje district in the southern region being among the worst a affected.
A DREF was launched to assist those affected with emergency shelter, Non-Food Items (NFIs) as well as water treatment supplies and hygiene promotion. The support enabled Malawi Red Cross (MRC) scale up its initial response which had commenced in December 2011 and to further support beneficiaries in addressing their needs. The response operation was planned to be implemented over a period of 3 months and completed by 9 June, 2012. However, to allow for the relocation of communities at risk to safer areas so that they could access relief assistance, the operation was extended for an additional 1 month through an operation update 1 of 18 May, 2012.
In response to the needs of the affected persons, MRC trained 8 members of staff and 45 volunteers in shelter construction and relief distribution. Emergency shelter assistance and essential household items and non food items was provided to 1,182 households. In addition, emergency school shelter was provided to 3 communities with a total of 2,364 tarpaulins, 2,364 blankets, 2,364 mosquito nets, 1,182 kitchen sets, 1,182 collapsible jerry cans and 1,182 shelter kits distributed.
To ensure a smooth distribution of these items, Red Cross officials carried out beneficiary registration in close collaboration with district assemblies ensuring that only those beneficiaries whose houses had been destroyed were enlisted for assistance. In addition, local leaders (division chairpersons, district council officials and Village Headmen) conducted sensitizations on the beneficiary selection criterion, beneficiary lists for each village, items they would receive, as well as a caution not to sell the relief items but instead use them for what they were intended. A post distribution monitoring was conducted and documented for future references.
Throughout the operation, MRC worked closely with the government of Malawi through the Department of Disaster Management Affairs, Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development. Other partners DREF final repo Malawi: Floods rt included UNICEF and GOAL Malawi.UNICEF provided tents that were used as temporary classrooms since some affected people were staying in the classrooms. The tents managed to accommodate three out of eight classes.MRC also worked with the Malawi Defense Force (MDF) and Department of Housing in evacuating people to higher and safer ground as well as erecting the shelters, toilets and bathrooms for the affected persons. The team coordinated the setting up of Osiyana transitional camp, moving people to ADMARC hall and Nsanje District Council rest house in Bangula.