Turkish nonprofit groups join forces to help flood-hit Sudan

Published 18.09.2019 00:14

The Turkish Red Crescent and an umbrella body of charities came together to help Sudan which experienced one of worst floods in its history in the past three months.

Charities member of the Union of Nongovernmental Organizations of the Islamic World (İDSB) will join the Red Crescent to give aid to hundreds of thousands of people. The first batch of aid that comprises of tents, blankets, medicine, medical equipment, food and hygiene kits will be sent today to Khartoum via an airplane that will take off from Ankara.

In the aid campaign titled "Let's Heal Sudan's Wounds Together," more than 20 charities are collecting donations to build "Turkish villages" in the worst-hit areas of Sudan.

Ali Kurt, secretary-general of İDSB, said at a press conference in Istanbul yesterday that they visited the disaster zones last week and met Sudanese officials to detect the immediate needs of the population. Kurt said floods destroyed about 41,000 houses in 16 states of Sudan and affected more than 350,000 people. He said they initially delivered 1,000 food packages during their visit last week and found out primary needs of the affected population was accommodation, health services, education and food.

Apart from the Red Crescent, the campaign is supported by state-run Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD) and prominent Turkish charities like the Aziz Mahmut Hüdayi Foundation, Beşir Association, Deniz Feneri Association, Humanitarian Aid Foundation (İHH), Turkish Diyanet Foundation and a Germany-based nonprofit group.

Kurt said their next step would be building "Turkish villages," housing units based on Sudan's local architecture, for accommodating displaced Sudanese. The charities will also set up mobile clinics for emergency health services.

"Our poor Sudanese brothers and sisters who live in rural areas in mudbrick houses were left homeless and are trying to cling to life amid the floodwaters. They have immediate needs like accommodation, health services and food. We will try to heal their wounds as soon as possible," Turkish Red Crescent President Kerem Kınık said at the press conference.

More than 70 Sudanese have been killed and dozens were injured in floods across the country. Torrential rains triggered floods that spanned across states and was also devastating for the capital Khartoum. The White Nile State in the south is deemed the worst affected. Flooding of the Nile River caused the most casualties and damage. Among risks the communities face in the African country are cut roads, damage to infrastructure, loss of livestock in rural communities and an epidemic of water-borne diseases. The U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said last month that an extra $150 million was needed from donors to respond to surging waters, in addition to the $1.1 billion required for the overall humanitarian situation in the country.

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