Bhubaneswar, October 21:
Save the Children has launched an initial appeal for Rs 21 crore to support the government — while working with NGO partners — to provide timely relief to those affected in Cyclone Phailin.
The aim is to alleviate suffering, restore dignity and ensure timely recovery of the worst affected families in Odisha and Andhra Pradesh. The money raised would help procure integrated house-hold kits containing food baskets, hygiene kits, tarpaulin sheets, blankets and solar lamps. Save the Children would establish child-friendly spaces where trained caregivers would provide alternative learning space and psycho-social care for children. Cash transfers to the most vulnerable families would also be undertaken to enable families to rapidly restore their broken homes and other critical needs.
Save the Children (www.savethechildren.in) has procured emergency hygiene and food kits for distribution among families who need them most.
“While human casualties have been limited thanks to the successful evacuation, our response draws from the fact that, this time around, it is the survivors who have been affected who would need support right up to the point so that their lives return to normal,” said Thomas Chandy, CEO, Save the Children,
Save the Children has been working in Odisha implementing disaster preparedness programmes from 2007 onwards and it works with communities, including schools and children, to prepare them to play an active role in disaster management.
“Our teams were on the ground supporting the administration in evacuation even during the cyclone. We are now ready to provide support to the government and NGO partners to respond to critical needs emerging from the cyclone for affected people,” reported Chandy.
Save the Children is working with government and partners now to quickly assess the needs of children as cyclone Phailin continues to hit Odisha and other parts of eastern India. It has its staff present in five teams that have jointly set out on Sunday morning from Bhubaneswar and Srikakulam and is participating in Inter Agency Group meetings and discussions and is also in touch with the state administration.
Save the Children congratulated the state governments of Odisha and Andhra Pradesh for the successful evacuation of people to shelters prior to the arrival of cyclone Phailin.
Sasanka Kumar Padhi, State Programme Manager (Odisha), Save the Children, appreciating the pro-active steps by the state govt. said “the government should continue rehabilitation and restoration of livelihoods of affected people with the same vigour as the evacuation drive and timely assistance is provided to those who need it.”
Save the Children will continue to engage with the government, Inter Agency Groups and other NGOs to ensure focus on the needs of children, who comprise more than 40 per cent of the state’s population and the affected families.