Heavy rains began pouring in Kinshasa province during the night of 3 to 4 January 2018, and continued until 7 January. The overall objective of this operation is to improve the living conditions of the most vulnerable 924 households, affected by floods in Kinshasa for three months. This will be done by carrying out the most urgent activities in the shelter and NFI distribution, WASH and emergency health areas of focus. The water levels of the 5 Rivers2 that cross Kinshasa province rose abnormally and the waters flew out of the river beds, causing flooding, landslide and silting in nine (9) communes of Kinshasa, namely Galiema, Bandalungwa, Selembao, Masina, Limete, Kalamu, Bumbu, Kimbaseke and Ndjili.
The disaster caused the destruction of 465 houses, left 17 people injured, and claimed 51 human lives. In total, 15 743 people (2,624 households) were affected by the disaster in many ways. Most of them have lost their basic necessity property, including school supplies for students. Several latrines and septic tanks have been washed away, a cholera treatment centre was also flooded, and 2,310 households are affected by the disaster. One of the 9 communes affected by the floods is Galiema, which is said to be the epicentre of the cholera outbreak that is currently raging in Kinshasa. There are fears that the flooding will accelerate the spread of the cholera epidemic in the entire Kinshasa province. National forecasts indicate that more rains, under the influence of cyclones from Madagascar, are to be expected until March 2018. Should this happen, more damages are to be expected The disaster affected 2,624 households in 9 communes of Kinshasa. 856 of these households are headed by women, and 1,454 by men. In total, 15,743 people were affected, including 2,643 children under 5 years, 762 breastfeeding women and 124 physically impaired people. The emergency assessment team of the DRC Red Cross has determined that approximately 40% of the affected people need emergency assistance. Thus, this EPoA is targeting the most vulnerable 5 544 people selected using the following criteria. – Households with pregnant or breastfeeding women
• Women-headed households
• Households with elderly people
• Households with physically impaired people
• Households with visibly low income
• Households left homeless by the disaster
In the Shelter and basic NFIs distribution sector, the most vulnerable households will be supported to rebuild their houses that collapsed as a result of the flooding and as such, each of the targeted households will be given tarpaulins to help protect them while Government is relocating them. No construction of emergency shelter is planned in this operation as Government does not want the affected populations to resettle in the affected localities. Continuous assessment will be made and the response strategy will be adjusted as the case may be. In addition, the most vulnerable families targeted will be given NFIs, including blankets, mats, buckets for collecting water, jerry cans for water conservation, kitchen kits, and soap to meet their immediate needs while being relocated. In addition, a logistics Delegate is present in Kinshasa and will assist with the procurement process to crosscheck prices and ensure quality of NFIs procured.
In the WASH sector, 150 Red Cross volunteers will be trained on WASH activities while targeted populations will be trained on the safe use of household water treatment techniques followed by distribution of appropriate HHWT chemicals such as Aqua tabs. In addition, the operation will provide support for the reinstatement to habitable status of 924 flooded houses, as well as support the drainage of storm and waste water. Hygiene promotion in emergencies activities targeting women, men, girls and boys will also be implemented by trained Hygiene promoters to promote construction of household latrines and prevent the outbreaks of water borne diseases. At community level, WASH committees will be put in place to manage the implementation of activities.
In the Health sector, Red Cross volunteers will be trained on the management of cholera, and cholera response activities will be carried out in the localities affected. This activity will be implemented in close collaboration with the WASH sector. Door to door and mass sensitisation will be conducted to strengthen public awareness on cholera prevention and treatment. Community engagement and accountability activities will also be carried out as crosscutting activities to enable the smooth implementation of the operation and ensure ownership of activities by the people affected. Long lasting insecticide treated nets (LLIN) will be distributed to targeted people to help prevent the spread of malaria, as the disease is endemic in DRC and mosquitoes proliferate in flooded areas. In addition, first aid kits will be given to Red Cross volunteers to support their first aid activities in the 9 communes affected.
A lesson learnt workshop will be conducted to inform future NS, DREF and Emergency Appeal operations, especially as the DRC regularly faces emergency situations including unrest, epidemics and natural disasters. One of the main lessons learned over the previous emergency operations is that almost the same localities are flooded. The reason is that people are settled in floods-prone areas, while the constructions are not made to resist the environment. The NS has embarked on an initiative to raise public awareness to the danger of living in those localities, and a disaster risk reduction programme is currently being implemented in Kinshasa with support from the Swedish Red Cross. This emergency response will also serve as an entry point to convincing the populations that they need to relocate to safer places as requested by Government.
5,544 people (924 households)