Mozambique’s Cyclone Idai Crises Can Destroy Children’s Futures

In Mozambique, at least 52 percent of the population is made of children. Thousands of children are alone and vulnerable.

Littered with broken trees and damaged buildings, the Mozambican city of Beira looks like a war zone following Cyclone Idai. Children help shift the detritus among ripped up telephone and power poles.

This catastrophe has killed hundreds and displaced thousands across southern Africa. Sadly, the death toll is expected to rise.

In Mozambique, at least 52 percent of the population is made of children. The scale of the damage in the country is unknown, but thousands of children are alone and vulnerable. Separated from their families, they have neither food, nor a shelter after their houses have been ripped apart by floods. With waters as high as 11 meters, they are at risk of drowning.

Water-borne diseases such as cholera, typhoid and diarrhea are spreading. It is only a matter of time before malaria – already endemic in the area – will do so too. With health centers and hospitals damaged, a second humanitarian catastrophe of sickness and death is looming.

The clean-up has started, but it is going to take months to fix the health centers, hospitals and schools that have been torn apart. Families now live in the husks of what is left.

Frustration is growing as organizations are battling to bring in cargo planes into Beira airport, which has barely enough electricity to keep a few lights on. Roads are still broken and flooded.

An estimated 65,000 people who fled the countryside are now living in displacement settlements in and around Beira. Unaccompanied children keep arriving into the city. World Vision is setting up child friendly spaces, where children will be monitored and allowed to have a safe space to play and recover.

As it often happens, these crises push the very poorest into absolute poverty and break any chance they have of escaping it. Floods have destroyed the crops that poor communities were hoping to get to break a cycle of hunger.

World Vision is among 14 organizations that have launched a joint appeal under the Disaster Emergency Committee (DEC), which brings together leading charities at time of crises. If you wish to donate, please click here.

About World Vision

World Vision is a Christian humanitarian organization dedicated to working with children, families, and their communities worldwide to reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice. Founded in 1950, World Vision serves close to 100 million people in nearly 100 countries, including the United States. World Vision serves all people, regardless of religion, race, ethnicity, or gender.

World Vision empowers children, families, and communities to escape poverty and injustice through programs like child sponsorship, clean water, education, food security, farming and agriculture, economic development, disaster relief, medical care, clothing and shelter, spiritual nurture, trafficking prevention, and advocacy on behalf of those whom we serve.

To read more news on Disaster Relief on Missions Box, go here.

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