The Hague – Relief supplies have landed on Nassau, Bahamas hit by the hurricane. It contains 400,000 water treatment tablets, 5,000 litre water tanks and 1,000 jerry cans, intended for 9,500 children and their families. The rapid distribution of relief supplies in the affected area is extra difficult due to the destroyed infrastructure. As soon as the hurricane allowed it, a UNICEF team travelled to the area and is working with the government to start the distribution of life-saving materials to families as quickly as possible, together with other UN units and with the Red Cross. A lot of money is needed for the help, an estimated 4 million dollars.
An estimated 18,000 children in the Bahamas (particularly on the islands of Abaco and Grand Bahamas) have been hit by Hurricane Dorian. Many need immediate help, according to UNICEF on the spot. Employees of UNICEF were able to reach Abaco, the island that was hit the worst by the hurricane. The team saw enormous despair and destruction. In and around the city of Marsh Harbor, schools and hospitals have blown flat, houses and roads have collapsed, cars and boats are hanging in the trees.
“The children who survived the hurricane lost their homes, their families. There is little water and food and the livelihood of families has often disappeared, “says Youssouf Abdel-Jelil, deputy director of UNICEF for the Caribbean. “They need help quickly. Almost five days after the hurricane hit the area, safe drinking water is the most valuable and life-saving, especially for mothers and children. “
“The full scale of the destruction on the ground is still being investigated, but initial analyses show that transport facilities at Abaco have been partially or completely destroyed. The distribution of humanitarian aid is therefore extremely challenging. The most vulnerable, the children, will be the hardest to reach, “said Abdel-Jelil.