After consecutive cyclones devastated Madagascar early this year, communities were left with nothing. For months, Humanity & Inclusion has been providing essentials to people in need.
In February 2022, back-to-back tropical cyclones killed over 100 people. They destroyed thousands of homes, schools and medical centers, and threatened hundreds of thousands of people, leaving many with nothing at all. Between February and May, Humanity & Inclusion led an emergency response project across nine districts in eastern Madagascar to support those impacted by the disasters. Humanity & Inclusion was one of only two organizations able to access the isolated area of Ikongo after the storms.
“After the cyclone, families had no more homes. There were more houses left in ruins than left standing,” says Henintsoa Andrianjatovo, Humanity & Inclusion’s Communications Officer. “People had to stay in emergency tents and didn’t have any of their belongings. They were able to survive thanks to humanitarian aid they received from organizations.”
Teams distributed various kits with essential supplies. Household kits, including kitchen utensils, mosquito nets, blankets, candles, and flashlights, were given to those who lost their belongings. Dignity kits provided individuals with washable sanitary napkins and underwear, while hygiene kits provided families with soap, water jugs, and buckets for handwashing and water storage. Many also received enough financial support to afford a dozen meals or significant house repairs. In June, Humanity & Inclusion provided reconstruction kits to various institutions, including local schools, to begin rebuilding damaged structures.
Aid makes a difference
“We always hear about what happens during a cyclone,” Andrianjatovo explains. “People are forced to leave, and then eventually they will come back and rebuild. But seeing for yourself a person who has lost everything and receives one of the kits—it’s no small thing. It may seem like a small thing to you or me, but I was touched to see just how happy people were to receive a kit of basic items. I saw moments of such sincere happiness and it was beautiful. It’s actually giving them so much; it gives them hope.”
The project targeted households consisting of people living with disabilities or aging individuals. In total, Humanity & Inclusion has supported 1,024 households through emergency response activities.
Beni Jean, who has a visual disability, is a father living in Farafangana. He received financial assistance from the project, which he says will enable him to help his children with their education.
Marie Antoinette, a mother of five living in Manakara, also receive financial support.
"After the cyclone, we left our house to live in the emergency tents,” she explains. “But we were told that this could only last for a month, so I resumed my activities as a fish seller and washerwoman. With the money Humanity & Inclusion gave me, I will be able to rebuild our home."
Humanity & Inclusion’s emergency response activities were made possible in part by support from the Government of Luxembourg and the European Union, in partnership with the Ministry of Population, Social Protection and the Promotion of Women.