Thousands of children have been rendered homeless in Sierra Leone by the devastating mudslides and flooding that destroyed parts of the capital city, Freetown on Monday 14 August.
With over 300 people confirmed dead and the rescue operation still under way, the safety and protection of the most vulnerable survivors – especially children – must remain a top priority.
Children particularly vulnerable
Children are among the most vulnerable when disasters occur.
“Children are among the most vulnerable when disasters occur,” says Martial Kounou – Plan International’s Interim Country Director in Sierra Leone. “Many will have become separated from their families as a result of the flooding and we must ensure that they receive assistance as quickly as possible.”
Plan International is carrying out a rapid needs assessment to support the families and children affected by the disaster, many of whom are now being housed in emergency shelters.
Immediate support for children
“We are working with the government and other humanitarian agencies to provide those affected with urgent items such as food, clean clothes, hygiene kits, and bedding to help them through the days and nights to come,” says Kounou.
“We will also be looking to ensure that the particular needs of children are catered for, and that they remain safe and protected in a time of such uncertainty, upheaval and chaos in their lives.”