Liberia: Red Cross Responds to Flood Victims in Grand Cape Mount County

Monrovia — The Liberia National Red Cross Society is helping victims of a fire disaster in Grand Cape Mount County with relief items to help them to re-establish their lives.

In March 2017, fire gutted over 140 makeshift structures in Sowee, Grand Cape Mount County.

Sowee is one of the largest local fishing communities in Grand Cape Mount with over 500 regular and irregular inhabitants, the LNRCS said.

Apart from the frequent fire outbreak, the community has also experienced sea erosion and flash floods disasters in succession.

Following the fire incident, Red Cross reported that it conducted a joint assessment along with its partner the International Committee of Red Crescent, with the intent to provide recovery support to the affected population due to the urgency of their needs.

"Up-to-date, we are pleased to inform you that we have worked with the community to clear the new site, erect their superstructures and we have provided 90 bundles of zinc and assorted nails to complete the construction of 45 - new homes," Saybah Tamba, Secretary General of LNRCS asserted in a statement.

Relief materials provided by LNRCS include cooking utensils, clothes, and buckets which the organization said will quickly help to reestablish the lives of those affected.

"Because of the constant threats of sea erosion, flash flood, and fire, the community recommended relocation which we accepted. Last year, we provided cleaning up tools for the purpose of cleaning the spot for building their new structures," Madam Tamba said.

Flood, storm, and fire disasters are somewhat serious natural and man-made phenomenon rendering many people homeless every year in Liberia.

Some of those affected are homeless, putting women and children health and security at risk.

However, LNRCS said it is targeting 125 structures, as part of its disaster support initiative to ensure that the relocation process remains smooth.

The statement added that many other victims are still left in a vulnerable situation as a result of the disaster and need help to re-establish their lives.

Nevertheless, LNRCS maintained that it will complete the target of providing relief items to victims in the coming weeks to ensure that they have a better place to live.

In a related development, LNRCS and the Qatar Red Crescent Society have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to launch joint humanitarian activities to assist vulnerable people and communities in Liberia.

The two humanitarian organizations will collaborate and support projects that will address local humanitarian needs in various sectors, including Water Sanitation Hygiene (WASH), Health Care, Nutrition, Food Security, Livelihoods and Climate Change Disaster Mitigation.

A release from the LNRCS said the MoU took effect immediately July 2019, upon signing by both entities during the visit of Mr. Ali Hassan Al-Hammadi, Secretary-General of the Qatar Red Crescent (QRC) along with Dr. Fawzi Oussedik, the Director of International Relations and International Humanitarian.

In furtherance of the MoU and as a result of a tour of the LNRCS clinic facilities on Lynch Street in Monrovia and Kakata in Margibi County, Mr. Ali Hassan Al-Hammadi, on behalf of the Qatar Red Crescent also offered an initial US$20,000 (Twenty Thousand United States Dollars) to the Liberian Red Cross for improvement of its Maternal Newborn Child Health (MNCH) and Out-Patient Department (OPD) clinic in Monrovia.

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