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Natural disasters 

An earthquake, tsunami, flood or cyclone can have a devastating impact on entire communities.

Within a matter of minutes, natural disasters can affect the lives of tens of thousands of people. Hundreds or even thousands of people can be injured, homes and livelihoods destroyed. Access to clean water, healthcare services and transport can also be disrupted. The impact of each disaster varies greatly and our response must adapt to each situation.

Needs must be quickly identified, but accessing a disaster zone can be complex when roads are cut off. The first responders are people already on-site: community members, local authorities and aid organisations already present.

We keep pre-packaged kits to deploy for rapid relief and life-saving assistance. With projects in over 70 countries, we often have aid workers nearby when a disaster strikes. They can be reinforced with additional teams if a larger response is needed.


An MSF tent hospital set up after the earthquake in Nepal in 2016  ©Emily Lynch

 

15/06/2021

Disease, floods and drought: southern Somalia hit by repeated emergencies

Humanitarian needs are soaring in southern Somalia as Jubaland state is hit by repeated emergencies including severe droughts, flash floods and outbreaks of disease.

14/06/2021

HELPING EACH OTHER: stories of solidarity after Nyiragongo eruption

Mount Nyiragongo, a volcano in North Kivu province, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), erupted on 22 May, leaving hundreds of thousands of people displaced, amid threats of new disasters. The tremors and aftershocks that terrorised the city of Goma, collapsing buildings, triggered a mass evacuation. Families who sought shelter in distant towns, such as Sake, Rutshuru and Minova, struggle to access the aid they so desperately need. At the same time, they find support among the people of the cities they fled to.

04/06/2021

People struggling to find food, shelter, water after east DRC volcano eruption

Nearly two weeks after the eruption of volcano Mount Nyiragongo, in northeastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), many people are struggling to survive in the areas to where they fled. Despite ongoing seismic activity and official warnings, many displaced people are returning to Goma searching for food, water, and medical care. Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is scaling up our support, but more humanitarian aid is still urgently needed.

03/06/2021

Conflict in Burkina Faso: when the whole day is devoted to fetching water

The desert region of Sahel, in the north of Burkina Faso, is the driest and hottest part in the country. Since 2018, this region has been at the centre of a growing armed conflict, which has engulfed much of the greater African Sahel that covers also the neighboring countries. As a result, many communities in this region are in need of humanitarian assistance. Violence and climate change have left a highly vulnerable population without water and at great risk of disease.

31/05/2021

Further assistance urgently needed for people following DRC volcano eruption

Hundreds of thousands of people have been left displaced, and over half a million in the city of Goma have been left without access to clean drinking water, following the eruption of Mount Nyiragongo in North Kivu province, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). While teams from Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) are responding, other humanitarian organisations should urgently step in to help meet people’s basic needs.

27/05/2021

Year in Review 2020

The year 2020 was extremely challenging for people all over the world, as they experienced extraordinary levels of disease, loss, fear and isolation due to the COVID-19 pandemic and its consequences. In many countries where Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) works – and some in which we normally don’t – the pandemic exacerbated existing healthcare issues caused by conflict, displacement and poverty.

17/05/2021

Food and nutrition crisis in Madagascar: “It’s hard to find the words to describe what I witnessed.”

Since the end of March, MSF teams have been responding to one of the worst food and nutrition crises ever experienced in southern Madagascar. Prior to deploying medical personnel, an exploratory team was sent to Amboasary district to conduct logistical and health assessments – actions essential to the rollout of an effective humanitarian response. One of the team was Jean Pletinck, an experienced logistician who has worked with MSF for 28 years. Jean describes the catastrophic living conditions of people in remote regions of southern Madagascar

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Natural disasters 

An earthquake, tsunami, flood or cyclone can have a devastating impact on entire communities.

Within a matter of minutes, natural disasters can affect the lives of tens of thousands of people. Hundreds or even thousands of people can be injured, homes and livelihoods destroyed. Access to clean water, healthcare services and transport can also be disrupted. The impact of each disaster varies greatly and our response must adapt to each situation.

Needs must be quickly identified, but accessing a disaster zone can be complex when roads are cut off. The first responders are people already on-site: community members, local authorities and aid organisations already present.

We keep pre-packaged kits to deploy for rapid relief and life-saving assistance. With projects in over 70 countries, we often have aid workers nearby when a disaster strikes. They can be reinforced with additional teams if a larger response is needed.


An MSF tent hospital set up after the earthquake in Nepal in 2016  ©Emily Lynch