Public Agenda (Accra)

Ghana: UK Gov't Commits £434,000 to Help Flood Victims in North

The Department for International Development (DFID) has committed £343,000 to CARE, an international charity to provide support to the people affected by flooding in Northern Ghana and £91,000 to the UN Flash Appeal for the ongoing co-ordination of the humanitarian response.

The CARE project aims to restore farmers' livelihoods, preparing them for future shocks and disasters and also addresses the need to build capacity of communities and government to deal with future emergencies. These new funds will restore agricultural land use, crop production and livestock and improve post harvest management.

Mike Hammond, Head of DFID Office in Ghana said: "DFID's funds will help to meet immediate and medium term food needs as food stocks have been destroyed and the cost of basic foodstuffs has increased as a direct result of the flooding. The CARE project will target between 25 and 30 of the most vulnerable communities in the three Northern regions".

The additional UN Flash Appeal support supplements a previous contribution by DFID of £250,000 to the International Federation of the Red Cross (IFRC) for immediate humanitarian needs following the floods.

DFID continues to monitor the situation in the North of Ghana and stands ready to continue to play its full part in the response to the floods and the resulting food insecurity.

During the months of August and early September 2007, heavy rainfall led to severe flooding in several West African countries resulting in the loss of lives, displacement of vulnerable persons and the destruction of key infrastructure, food stocks and livestock throughout the region. The most recent regional estimates indicate that as many as 800,000 people have been affected by the floods in Ghana, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Togo, Mali, The Gambia, Niger, Senegal, Côte d'Ivoire, Liberia, Mauritania, Sierra Leone and Benin.

In Ghana, excessive rainfall coupled with the spillage of excess water from the Bagre Reservoir in Burkina Faso has resulted in extensive floods in the Northern, Upper East and Upper West Regions. The floods have caused severe damage in these regions, including the loss of livestock, the destruction of farmlands, houses, bridges, schools and health facilities, as well as damage to the water supply, irrigation systems, food storage and processing facilities.

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