Red Cross launches Emergency Appeal for Sudan as deadly flooding leaves thousands homeless

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) today launched an additional funds appeal for 12 million Swiss Francs to support the Sudanese Red Crescent Society (SRCS) in delivering assistance to people affected by flooding.

Since July 2020, heavy rainfall has been escalating in Sudan and today, 16 of the 18 states are flooded. Sinnar, Khartoum, and Al Gezira are the most affected states. Teams of Red Crescent volunteers are helping people to move to higher ground and providing emergency support to the most vulnerable people affected by the disaster.

Elfadil Eltahir, SRCS President, said:

“The magnitude of the flooding disaster is unprecedented. The situation is getting worse as water continues to rise by the hour, covering new areas and causing more devastation. To cope with this dire situation, more humanitarian assistance is badly and urgently needed in order to alleviate the suffering of those affected, by protecting their health, life and dignity.”

The flooding has affected more than 500,000 people who are all in need of shelter, household items, health and care, water, hygiene, sanitation, food and other basic needs. The SRCS will assist at least 200,000 of these people. Across the country, women, girls, children, older people, migrants — as well as people with disabilities and underlying conditions, remain at risk.

John Roche, IFRC’s Head of East Africa Office said: “This is an unfolding situation as information comes from those on the frontline, the testimonies of the devastation and loss is overwhelming. More than 100,000 homes so far have been reported to have been carried away by the floods, food crops have been destroyed, access to clean drinking water becomes precarious as many face increased exposure to water- and vector-borne disease.”

The SRCS will use the funds from the emergency appeal to provide emergency shelter materials, safe drinking water and hygiene materials, primary health care to prevent disease outbreaks, psychosocial support and cash grants for food and basic needs. Communities and families want to stay close together and move as a group and it is difficult to implement Covid-19 preventive measures.

In addition, the funds will also help volunteers to share life-saving information on waterborne disease prevention, risk avoidance, and early warning systems on possible flooding or landslide threats. More volunteers will be trained on how to conduct assessment and monitoring.

The Sudan floods are yet another example of the increasing climate risks we face around the world. Global leaders such as IFRC President Francesco Rocca — who have been meeting this week to address these challenges during a global climate summit (Climate:Red) with 10,000 participants from 195 countries — indicated that climate change is one of the IFRC’s top priorities for the coming decade, and will require a combination of increased response to emergencies such as the one we now face in Sudan, but also increased efforts to help communities to adapt and reduce the rising risks.

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