Israeli non-governmental humanitarian aid organization IsraAID sent a first-response team of 16 volunteers to southern Nepal on August 17 to bring medical, psychosocial and sanitation assistance in the wake of floods and landslides affecting six million people in 18 districts.
The surging waters have washed away thousands of houses and permanently damaged farmland, food stocks and water infrastructure only two years after an earthquake wreaked devastation in the Asian country. More than 120 people have lost their lives, and many more are still missing.
Dangerous flooding in southern Nepal poses a high risk of waterborne disease, according to IsraAID, whose team was one of the first on the ground. More than 400 flood victims benefited from IsraAID’s services and activities on the first day alone.
“Our medical team saw a high number of cases of skin diseases, ear problems and malnutrition. Fears of outbreaks of waterborne and mosquito-borne epidemics are growing. We are working in close coordination with local authorities and the Ministry of Health to monitor and respond as needed,” the organization reports.
Meanwhile, in Africa, IsraAID continues to provide emergency relief in Sierra Leone following disastrous flooding and mudslides there that began on August 14.
“Incessant rainfall this Sunday night and Monday left the capital of Sierra Leone, Freetown in a state of emergency,” IsraAID reported. “Torrents of water rushed through the city in the early hours sweeping up entire homes, creating deadly mudslides and leaving massive destruction in its wake.
About 400 people have lost their lives, and hundreds are still missing after the heavy rains deluged the city’s insufficient drainage system.
IsraAID’s team in Sierra Leone is working closely with the government to provide emergency relief distribution, psychological first aid and water, sanitation and hygiene solutions to prevent the spread of waterborne diseases.