Port Vila, Vanuatu – The United States, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), has allocated USD $3.2 million (VUV 384 million) in humanitarian assistance to support relief efforts in Vanuatu to respond to the devastating impacts of Tropical Cyclones Judy and Kevin.
This emergency support for Vanuatu will enable humanitarian partners to provide shelter assistance as communities start rebuilding homes; agriculture support to help restore livelihoods and improve food security; water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) assistance including safe drinking water and supplies; and protection for the most vulnerable people affected by the storms.
USAID’s Assistant Administrator for Asia, Mr. Michael Schiffer announced the funding in Port Vila on Wednesday. Mr. Schiffer traveled to Vanuatu from March 21-22 as part of a senior U.S. delegation, who are seeking to deepen the bilateral relationship between the United States and Vanuatu.
This USAID assistance includes an initial USD $200,000 (VUV 24 million) in funding provided to CARE to meet immediate needs resulting from the tropical cyclones. The support is providing emergency shelter, WASH, and protection assistance to 4,000 people in the most affected communities, including the distribution of dignity and shelter kits.
Ms. Nerry Obed, a woman from Makira Village in Port Vila’s Anambrou Area, says the shelter kits provided with support from USAID are desperately needed. “Cyclone Kevin blew off the roof of my house and damaged the timber. I want to thank you very much for the tarpaulin you gave to me. It will help me,” said Ms. Obed.
USAID works year-round to help communities in Vanuatu prepare for and be more resilient to natural disasters. Through existing awards, USAID’s disaster risk reduction and preparedness partners are assisting the Government of Vanuatu to respond to the impacts of the tropical cyclones through logistics, emergency telecommunications, and coordination assistance.