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ShelterBox responds to flooding in Zimbabwe

Source: ShelterBox - Wed, 19 Feb 2014 15:00 GMT
Author: ShelterBox
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Flooding in Masvingo province, Zimbabwe, February 2014. Image courtesy of David Coltart.
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Any views expressed in this article are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters Foundation.

ShelterBox is responding to flooding in Zimbabwe’s Masvingo province, following unusual heavy rains that have forced over 2,000 families to uproot their homes, taking with them only the few possessions they can carry.

The families had been living along the river basin near the partially constructed Tokwe Murkosi dam. Incessant rains, rare during this time of year, created fears that the dam was going to overflow. Instead, the river has caused severe flooding that has damaged thousands of homes positioned along it.

ShelterBox Response Team volunteer Phil Wheeler lives in Harare, around 400 km from the affected area.

‘The government has declared a State of Disaster and thousands of families are currently being evacuated from their flooded homes,’ said Phil.

‘We’re working with the International Organization for Migraiton (IOM), who is leading the response in the areas of emergency shelter, mobile health services and other vital aid, in partnership with relevant government departments.

Whilst ShelterBox will be carrying out needs assessments with partners, it has been estimates that a further 60,000 people downstream from the disaster area are reported to be at risk of flooding if the rain persists.

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