Israeli aid organization IsraAID has launched an emergency response to Malawi, which is dealing with a double emergency brought on by a cyclone that threatens to compound an existing deadly cholera outbreak.
Early in February, the southeastern African country was hit by Cyclone Freddy, which continued to ravage the area until mid-March. More than 700 people have been killed in the region, mostly in Malawi, and over 500 are missing.
The eight-person delegation arrived in Malawi on Monday and includes personnel from its headquarters in Tel Aviv as well as from missions in other African countries. It is setting up cholera prevention points in the city of Blantyre, which was hardest hit by flash flooding and is now home to displacement camps.
Focusing on water sanitation and hygiene, the delegation brought two large water filtration systems, chlorine tablets and oral rehydration salts to provide access to drinking water and prevent the spread of cholera. The delegation also is assembling hygiene kits for families left homeless by the flooding.
IsraAID’s support was requested by the president of Malawi, based on its expertise in the region. IsraAID began working in neighboring Mozambique following Cyclone Idai in March 2019, and remains there with a long-term mission focused on humanitarian needs in the conflict-stricken Cabo Delgado province.
The initial delegation is set to remain in Malawi for two weeks and will be followed by another emergency response team.
In February, IsraAID sent an emergency response team to Turkey following the devastating earthquake that shook the country and neighboring Syria. It is also still operating in war-torn Ukraine and other locations across the world.