1000 Households to receive Cyclone Freddy relief Items
Global Emergency Fund (GEF) has provided funds to support 1000 older persons' families affected by Cyclone Freddy. The target districts are Blantyre and Mulanje, TA Manchinjili and T/A Kapeni in Blantyre, and T/A Juma and T/A Mtiramanja
The project is aimed at Supporting vulnerable older persons affected by effects of cyclone Freddy.
The total project budget is $49,957.80 Beneficiaries will receive Food and Non-Food items.
1500 Patients get their Sight
Through our 'Improving access to quality, inclusive and comprehensive eye health services for marginalized rural communities' project, we have managed to restore sight to over 1500 people who had blindness because of cataracts.
Before the project, only referral hospitals were the ones offering cataract surgeries but through the inclusive eye care project, we want to see surgeries being done in districts that do not provide such services
We target 7,000 patients by 2024. The project is funded by CBM UK and Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office..
As Cyclone Freddy tore through Malawi, its heavy rains and fierce winds left a trail of destruction in its wake. Among the hardest hit were older people, who now find themselves grappling with the loss of their homes, livelihoods, and loved ones. With no choice but to seek refuge in overcrowded camps, they face an uncertain future and rely heavily on government and aid agencies for support.
Cyclone Freddy Survivor
The 65 year old mother of seven and grandmother of four together with her husband, 78 year old retired civil servant had built a decent life for themselves. They had a house of their own and a small business selling a variety of household commodities and farm produce.“Despite the financial challenges that the ordinary Malawian is facing, my husband and I had built a decent life and we were content with what we had,” she says.
However, on the evening of 13 March 2023, they lost everything they had except the clothes they were wearing. The densely populated community experienced severe mudslides caused by cyclone Freddy in Southern Malawi.
We had heard from the radio about a cyclone that will cause heavy rains in Blantyre, but we did not think of the impending doom to our household, we thought the house was strong enough and would withstand the heavy rains as it did with cyclone Ana.
I was at the market that afternoon, selling the last of tomatoes that I had harvested 3 days before when I heard the news; my neighbor shouting from a distance, come and see what has happened to your house!
My heart raced, I thought about my husband with arthritis who had problems walking, and I thought about my three grandchildren whom I had left at home, I rushed at home to find my home in ruins. Everything had been wiped out.
designated camps. Since we arrived, there was a squander for resources, we had to stand in long lines to get clean water from boreholes, because of this, we were forced some to skip bathing, washing our clothes, washing hands and cleaning kitchen utensils. The latrine situation wasn’t any better, at our home, my husband a special toilet build to support his bad knees, but this was not the case at the camp. My husband and I together with our grandchildren decided to leave the camp and build a make-shift home while we find a lo lasting solution
Prisca's recurring nightmare
“This is the fourth time my home has been destroyed.”
Prisca Kumbikani, 65, is all too familiar with the destruction caused by cyclones, having experienced it four times, including this year's Cyclone Freddy. The storm claimed her home, as well as maize and cassava crops. Prisca and her five-year-old granddaughter, whom she cares for, now live in the Manja Primary School camp. Faced with the loss of her farming and brick-making income, Prisca fears she will no longer be able to send her granddaughter to school.
Esme's heart-breaking loss
Esme's six-year-old grandson is now missing and feared dead
Esme, a 68-year-old woman, lost her home as the cyclone's torrential rains washed it away. She and her family, including her daughter and two grandchildren, barely managed to escape the deluge. Tragically, Esme's six-year-old grandson is now missing and feared dead. Living in difficult conditions in an overcrowded camp, Esme is no longer able to earn a living by washing clothes, and her family struggles to access food and clean water.
the same is true for COVID-19 Pandemic. Despite the fact that the pandemic spreads among persons of all ages and conditions, available evidence indicates that older persons and those with underlying medical conditions are at a higher risk of serious illness and death from the COVID-19 disease. This has been acknowledged by authentic institutions including the World Health Organization and United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs. There is strong evidence, however, that getting vaccinated prevents severe illness, hospitalizations, and death.
Despite provisions in International Instruments declaring the entitlement of older people to enjoy full range of rights, including right to health, older people continue to suffer exclusion and to face multiple challenges in accessing services. In general, older persons in Malawi and other low-income countries often have differentiated access to services, exposure to knowledge and information, resources and access to mobility.
As of September 2022, only 11.8 percent of the Malawi population was fully vaccinated. Several studies on perceptions around COVID-19 vaccine identified local attitudes towards the COVID-19 vaccine as an important factor to meet vaccination benchmarks. From this, accurate information as well as accessibility come out as key factors for uptake of COVID-19 Vaccines among older people.
We are therefore carrying out a targeted campaign to promote COVID-19 vaccination among older people. The campaign combines provision of accurate information as well as an opportunity for vaccination to the older people.
On 28 March 2023, we were in Balaka, Namalolo grounds creating demand for the COVID-19 vaccine in the area. About 100 people were vaccinated on sight and door to door vaccination will continue in the area.