The impacts of climate genocide are real. Cyclone Idai left behind a wake of destruction in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe when it made landfall almost two weeks ago. Reports are starting to trickle in about people waiting for help on rooftops in rural areas and only being saved by neighbors with canoes if they had money to pay (less than a dollar), shots fired during food distribution in Beira and price gouging on everything from food to helicopter rentals for search and rescue missions.
And while Beira city remains largely in tact, more than 3,000 square kilometers remain under water, an area larger than the entire state of Rhode Island. The death toll continues rising and it's likely there will never be an accurate count as many bodies may have been swept out to sea or buried in silt. While aid begins to trickle in, it is woefully inadequate.
When natural disasters of this magnitude strike, international NGOs are fast on the scene, but well-established local organizations are often best equipped to assess need deliver aid quickly. After receiving reports from journalists, friends and former colleagues who are on the ground, here are a some suggestions of places we can direct funds to support immediately:
This group is a collaboration between Plataforma Makobo and other local partners. Plataforma Makobo has been running an award-winning and innovative feeding program largely focused on vulnerable children in Mozambique's capital city. As of last year, they were feeding over 3,000 people a week before they expanded operations from Maputo to include neighboring Matola. Coração Solidário is an expansion of their activities to flood impacted areas in the north. US-based donations can be made via PayPal to email@example.com.
MICAIA Foundation works in Manica province east of Beira that shares a border with Zimbabwe. They have been funding innovative sustainable agriculture projects in the region for over a decade. Andrew Kingman, director of Eco-Micaia, is collecting funds to gather essential supplies to rush to Manica province as soon as roads re-open, hopefully in the coming days. Donations can be made here.
This is the largest disaster relief organization of African origin operating on the continent. They are responsible for sending helicopters for search and rescue and providing medical treatment to over 250 people at Gwaragwara Clinic in the Buzi district southeast of Beira. They've now focused all efforts on Estaquina camp, a second camp they established near Bizo, where more than 2,000 people have been rescued from floodwaters. Donations can be made here.