Red Cross teams in Nepal and India are urgently rescuing survivors and providing relief where devastating floods and landslides have swept away homes and entire villages.
More than 150 people have died across the two countries and dozens are missing according to government authorities, after some of the heaviest rains in more than a century fell on provinces in Nepal and northern India.
Azmat Ulla, Head of Delegation, International Federation of Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) in Nepal, said that the Red Cross is working non-stop to aid thousands people whose lives have been turned upside down, with homes destroyed and livelihoods devasted by this unseasonal and massive deluge.
“Infrastructure has been damaged, including roads and bridges, making access difficult. It’s critical every effort is made to rush more food, safe water and shelter supplies to people who have been left with nothing. Crops and homes have been wiped out, which is a severe blow to families already grappling with the devastating fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.
Azmat says that the people of Nepal and India are sandwiched between the pandemic and worsening climate disasters, heavily impacting millions of lives and livelihoods.
Heavy rainfall is unusual in India and Nepal during October, which is traditionally outside the monsoon season, however authorities in both countries have warned that more rain is likely in the coming days, sparking fears of more floods and landslides.
As well as delivering relief, Nepal Red Cross is working with local authorities to warn thousands of people of further threats from rising floodwaters and landslides. With further storms and heavy rain forecast, there is a need to access remote communities to provide essential relief items and prepare for further floods and landslides,” Azmat said.
Last month, the IFRC released around 321,000 Swiss Francs from its Disaster Relief and Emergency Fund to support people in Nepal with relief and other assistance including, clean water, hygiene, health services and access to shelter, with winter fast approaching.
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The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides comfort to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; distributes international humanitarian aid; and supports veterans, military members and their families. The Red Cross is a nonprofit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to deliver its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.