Global perspective Human stories

UN and aid partners call for $20 million to help in Sudanese flood relief efforts

UN and aid partners call for $20 million to help in Sudanese flood relief efforts

The United Nations and its partner non-governmental organizations (NGOs) today launched a flash appeal for more than $20 million so they can help millions of Sudanese recover from what many consider to be the country's worst floods in living memory.

Dozens of people have died and more than 200,000 others have become homeless since torrential rains starting early last month led to flash floods across large parts of eastern Sudan, damaging infrastructure such as schools and inundating vital cropland.

The Office of the UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Sudan said at least 410,000 people are directly affected by the floods, with over three million others at risk from epidemic outbreaks and polluted water. So far, 57 people are reported to have died from acute watery diarrhoea (AWD).

Launching the appeal, Emergency Relief Coordinator John Holmes said “these funds will enable us to save lives, to assist families who lost everything in gradually restoring their livelihoods, to prevent deadly epidemics, and to help children get back to school.”

Earlier this month Mr. Holmes approved a grant of $8.7 million from the UN's Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), while almost $5 million more has been allocated from the local Common Humanitarian Fund (CHF).

But UN officials estimate that some $34.7 million is needed to help implement 48 flood-relief projects, run by either UN aid agencies, NGOs or the International Organization for Migration (IOM).

This leaves $20.2 million to be provided by donors under the flash appeal announced today, with most of the funds going to water and sanitation projects, food relief, health care, shelter and infrastructure repair.

Oluseyi Bajulaiye, the acting UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Sudan, said that while the amount requested “is substantial? we are optimistic that the international community will continue to respond generously.”

Using the funds committed so far, the UN and NGOs have been able to provide clean water to more than one million people and to establish temporary shelter for 200,000 Sudanese.

But more money is needed in part because relief workers fear that an additional 265,000 people may be affected by new flooding as the annual rainy season continues in the African nation.

So far the worst affected Sudanese states are Blue Nile, Gedaref, Gezira, Jonglei, Kassala, Khartoum, North Kordofan, Red Sea, Unity, Upper Nile and White Nile.