Plan provides aid to Benin flood victims
Heavy seasonal rains have caused flooding across Benin, affecting the lives of more than 680,000 people. The rains are still continuing, hindering emergency relief efforts and leaving people more vulnerable to the disaster. Plan is working to provide emergency support to the affected communities.
Families at risk
In communities across Benin, over 150,000 homes, clinics and businesses were damaged or destroyed by the flood waters, including more than 600 schools. Immediate food supplies have been compromised or destroyed. Families are seeking temporary shelter with friends, family members or in public buildings including schools not affected by the floods.
Children in flood affected communities have become especially vulnerable to outbreaks of disease including cholera, malaria, diarrhea, skin conditions and respiratory infections. Already, 800 cases of cholera have been reported.
The floods have also caused extensive damages to agriculture and the market economy it supports. The long-term food security of the region is at risk. It is estimated that a full year of food crops along with seeds have been lost. A reported 40% of the national rice, maize and millet production have been destroyed. Government officials reported that rotted crops left 200,000 people in fear of a longer lean season or famine in the coming year.
“Plan was working in the affected communities before the floods came,” said Bell’Aube Houinato, Plan Benin Country Director. “Providing disaster and then recovery assistance is a natural extension of our programs to improve the lives of children.”
For 16 years, Plan has been working in Benin benefiting more than 16,000 children in 110 communities and protecting them from work trafficking to Nigeria, Gabon and Angola. To address the effect of flood on local population, Plan is committed to helping the survivors in the short term and through the recovery. Working with local partners and authorities in the Mono/Couffo and Atakora regions, Plan’s immediate actions will include:
- Provision of corn, beans, rice, oil, sugar, soya and cassava in Couffo and Atacora
- Information, education and communication on hygiene (IEC) and disease prevention
- Distribution of water purification drugs
- Distribution of 5,000 impregnated bed nets and first care drugs
- Distribution of tent and shelter supplies
- Repairs to schools affected by flooding or serving as shelters
To help Plan respond to emergencies like the devastating floods in Benin, make a donation to Plan's Disaster Risk and Reduction programs.