Press release: GRCS responses to havoc caused y windstorm in the country

Jul 9, 2021, 12:15 PM

The Gambia Red Cross Society (GRCS) received information through Regional Structures about windstorm that hit most parts of the country during the early hours of Friday evening (18:00 hrs), 2nd July 2021. This happened in these regions of Upper River (URR), Central River (CRR), Lower River (LRR), North Bank (NBR) and West Coast (WCR).

The Gambia Red Cross Society, as the leading humanitarian institution simultaneously responded by deploying a team of staff and volunteers on the ground in response to the needs of the affected families by providing humanitarian services in accordance with fundamental principles of the Red Cross.

Based on our strategy, GRCS responded as rapidly and as effectively as possible, by mobilising resources (people, NFIs, and other assets) and using our network in a coordinated manner so that the initial effects of the windstorm are countered and the needs of the affected communities are met.

The first phase of the response was:

  • Emergency coordination meeting and team deployment for field assessment
  • Liaise with regional partners such as NDMA, WFP and Governor’s office.
  • Assess the number of affected families
  • Distribution of relief items

By 22:00 hrs, GRCS loaded three vehicles with relief items (250 Sleeping Mats, 300 Bed  sheets, 43 Big Buckets, 80 small buckets, 1080 pieces of soap, 276 bottles of Dettol, 300 Blankets, 700 reusable face masks, 290 bottles of Bleach) together with staff to reinforce the capacity of the 20 local volunteers and regional staff already operating on the ground.

The number of affected households sums up to 163. There are reports of 2 confirmed injuries, including a 5yr old boy. Many homes were completely destroyed, but some partially damaged. Few injured persons are recorded (actually seeking medical attention), but figures need to be confirmed for injured persons. So far, all relief items have been delivered and the assessment is still ongoing in the regions.

According to GRCS staff and volunteers on ground, there is huge need for humanitarian support such as shelter, food, medication, Water, Sanitation and Hygiene products (WASH).

GRCS is on the process of launching a Disaster Relief Emergency Fund to address the urgent needs of the affected people targeting to support 200 families severely affected by the windstorm.

NB: The typical and the most urgent needs created by the windstorm surge is shelter.

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