|Children commuted on a bamboo bouy in a flooded road in Quảng Điền District in Thừa Thiên Huế Province during typhoon Damrey last year. VNS Photo Phước Bửu|
THỪA THIÊN- HUẾ — Some 73,100 residents in areas affected by typhoon Damrey late last year now have access to fresh water and sanitation.
This has been possible due to a six-month effort by local and international agencies, including UNICEF.
According to a report of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), the beneficiaries include residents of 20,245 families in 30 communes of the central provinces of Thừa Thiên-Huế, Bình Định and Phú Yên.
Typhoon Damrey swept through the localities in November last year, leaving 107 dead, while 16 people were missing, and 342 others were injured. Many children, who were on their way home from school when the typhoon hit, were reported dead or missing.
The affected communes, especially women and children, were in urgent need of fresh water and sanitation facilities in the aftermath of the typhoon.
“In response to calls from the localities for urgent assistance on fresh water during that time, UNICEF succeeded in mobilising US$1.1 million from the UN Central Emergency Response Fund (UNCERF) for the work,” said Chu Văn Chuông, deputy director of MARD’s International Relations, at a workshop in Huế City on Thursday to review the water supply work in the affected areas.
He said the “affected residents now have access to fresh water supply and sanitary facilities, thanks to the work”.
From December 2017 to May this year, the National Centre for Rural Water Supply and Environment has worked with the provincial authorities in the affected localities to install water-filtering equipment in schools and households, using the fund from UNICEF and under the supervision of UNICEF Việt Nam.
It also organised communication programmes to raise awareness on water use and sanitation among residents in the beneficiary areas.
According to a report of Phú Lương Commune in Thừa Thiên-Huế, UNICEF’s assistance with water tanks and filtering equipment has helped in the quick recovery of the locality after the typhoon.
Nguyễn Anh, the commune’s deputy chairman, said the equipment would also be helpful during floods.
UNICEF adviser Yoshimi Nishino said the assistance would come in handy in disaster preparation and adaptation of the localities, each of which has 10 beneficiary communes.
She reiterated that UNICEF was committed to collaborating in humanity projects focusing on children across the country. — VNS