A desperate and largely unknown humanitarian crisis is deteriorating in the Lake Chad Basin region of West Africa, forcing millions of people to flee their homes and leaving millions more in need of humanitarian assistance. Oxfam is providing life-saving support but help is urgently needed to prevent the crisis turning into a catastrophe.
Total aid pledged at the Third International Humanitarian Pledging Conference for Syria, in Kuwait City, Kuwait, is less than half the amount needed this year to help people in desperate humanitarian need.
Aid actors estimate that $8.7 billion is needed in 2015 to support 18 million people in Syria and neighbouring countries, the equivalent to a little more than one US dollar per person per day.
Aid should today begin to reach the hard hit southern Vanuatu islands of Tanna and Erromango, which both took the full force of the 250kmh Cyclone Pam, after rapid assessments of the islands showed absolute devastation with entire villages destroyed.
Two rapid assessment teams have arrived in the two small southern Vanuatu islands hit hardest by Cyclone Pam to rapidly assess exactly what survivors of the disaster need.
Vanuatu could face a second emergency with waterborne disease a real risk if the need for clean water, sanitation and hygiene is not met, Oxfam said today.
Up to 90 per cent of housing in Vanuatu's capital reported to have been seriously damaged by Cyclone Pam, with still no information from the extremely vulnerable outer islands which are home to 33,000 people.
Stories of complete devastation are beginning to come out of Vanuatu in the aftermath of the severe tropical cyclone Pam.
10 year old Nesma used to enjoy going to school. But now school is a constant reminder that her home is gone: Her family sleeps in a classroom as their house was completely destroyed during the 50 days of war.
International agency Oxfam today flew out a seven strong team of experts to Iraq to set up an aid program to help thousands of people forced to flee their homes in recent days.
Three years after Haiti's devastating 2010 earthquake, hundreds of thousands of people are still living under tents and tarpaulins and the country continues to be very vulnerable.