At least 1 206 people from 317 families are sharing three toilets and a bathroom at Mafale 2 Camp in Chikwawa after they were displaced due to recent heavy rains and flooding.
Camp chairperson Grey Phazi, speaking on Friday when Habitat for Humanity Malawi distributed emergency kits to 600 families in Chikwawa, including the 317 families at the camp, said the situation is putting them at risk of infectious diseases such as cholera and diarrhoea.
He said: “The main problem is that we do not have materials to use in building more toilets and bathrooms because they [the materials] were washed away with the rains. Apart from toilets and bathrooms, we also lack proper shelter as the makeshift houses which we made leak when it rains.”
In his remarks, Habitat for Humanity Malawi board chairperson Jallison Chaguluka said the organisation has a responsibility to reduce vulnerability among families affected by the disaster which has affected close to 840 000 people nationwide.
He said: “We secured K18.7 million funding from Habitat for Humanity International which we have used to procure the 600 emergency kits we are distributing today in Chikwawa. We are also working tirelessly to mobilise more support to assist more families in the district.”
The emergency kits comprised tarpaulin, tarpaulin ropes, water buckets, soap and solar lights.
One of the beneficiaries at Mafale 2 Camp, Wotchi Mose,17, who looks after his three siblings, thanked Habitat for Humanity Malawi, saying the shelter box they received will resolve their shelter problem.
About 94 000 people have been displaced in the country following floods caused by week-long incessant rains that occurred two weeks ago. A total of 187 camps have been established across the country to shelter those displaced.