Vanuatu: a critical time for a devastated population
It passed over Vanuatu in less than an hour, but in that short space of time, Cyclone Pam devastated hundreds of thousands of lives on the tiny Pacific island nation.
As with the aftermath of any environmental disaster, it is children who are most vulnerable.
One day on from the cyclone, up to 75,000 children in Vanuatu could be in desperate need of food, water and shelter. Save the Children’s team is on the ground doing whatever it takes to keep children safe.
Donate now to our Emergency Fund to help in emergencies like this.
Tom Skirrow, who is in Vanuatu with Save the Children, says: “Children are going to be very afraid, they are going to be hungry and some of them may even have become separated from their families.
“Keeping children safe is as important as ensuring they’re fed and sheltered, so in the coming days we will establish safe places for children in evacuation centres.
While it may not sound life-saving, it is absolutely essential that children be cared for in safe places. We will provide this care as we have done in other emergencies around the world.”
A vital period
The coming days will be critical. We’ve been flying in with aid from Australia, and by the early part of next week, our team on the ground in Vanuatu will be bolstered by a team of seven international disaster response specialists, including experts in health, shelter, livelihood support as well as water, sanitation and communications.
Once in Vanuatu they will team up with Save the Children aid workers already there to assess the damage before mounting an urgent relief operation.
We’ve also pledged £67,000 from our Emergency Fund to help with the effort. The fund allows us to act quickly when disasters like this strike, so that more children can be saved, and support communities to recover in the aftermath.
If you’ve been moved by the images and stories coming out of Vanuatu and want to help, please donate now: your support could save lives.