IRC and Local Partners Expand Aid Deliveries in Myanmar, Reaching Cyclone Survivors Yet to Receive Assistance
The IRC is poised to receive 40 tons of donated and purchased medical, water treatment and shelter supplies arriving on international flights over the next week. The materials, which will benefit some 80,000 people, will begin to arrive in Yangon tomorrow and will be distributed in conjunction with the Myanmar Red Cross and other local partners to underserved communities.
This week, the IRC and a team of volunteers and local aid workers reached Kyungyan Kone Township and, over three days, delivered critical supplies to hundreds of families who had yet to receive any aid. The materials included mosquito nets, blankets, tarps, clothing, water containers, cooking supplies and candles.
The area is on the southeastern edge of the Irrawaddy Delta and got pummeled by Cyclone Nargis nearly two weeks ago.
“In one settlement, about 300 survivors who lost their homes were clustered in a shelter that gave them no protection at all because the roof was torn off by the cyclone,” said one IRC volunteer. “They sit and beg for help as the monsoon rains come pouring down on them.”
The IRC’s emergency coordinator in Myanmar, Gordon Bacon, raised concern that current downpours could worsen road conditions and hamper aid deliveries, making an already dire situation worse.
“It’s hard to describe the sheer misery and desperation these people are suffering,” says Bacon. “They wait for help -- homeless, cold, sick and hungry -- and get lashed by more rain. So the sick get sicker when they need to stay dry and warm and get proper care. We hope our blankets and tarps will offer some measure of protection from the elements. It’s modest assistance compared to what is needed in a crisis of this magnitude, but it will certainly help.”To Help
The IRC is accepting contributions to support emergency relief programs and recovery assistance in Myanmar. Donations in the U.S. can be made by calling 1-877-REFUGEE (1-877-733-8433) or by clicking here, and in the UK by calling 44 020 7692 2735 or visiting www.IRCuk.org.For More Information For Media Contacts