In May 2020, Cyclone Amphan caused widespread damage across West Bengal and Bangladesh. Amphan is the most powerful cyclone recorded in the Bay of Bengal. Damages were reported to amount upto $13.2 billion, according to a government source(1). At least 85 people were reported to have been killed mostly from falling trees or electrocution. Power supply was cut, trees uprooted, roads water-logged and homes were torn apart (2).
Vibha, through their existing partnership with project Swarnivar, worked to provide relief and resources to families in villages of the North Paraganas 24 district of West Bengal. In this district, at least 9 persons were killed, 2 injured and 5500 homes were damaged (3). Vibha’s target by partnering with Swarnivar was to support 300 out of 500 villages in this area consisting of 12 villages across 5 blocks of the district.
Through Vibha’s support, by early June 50 pieces of tarpaulin and thick sheets were distributed among 50 families. Dry food relief was provided to 150 families in Sandeshkali and Hingalganj blocks, along with water and water cans. In addition to these provisions, training was given on water treatment and how to make safe drinking water in temporary shelters. Saplings were distributed and planted by Prayash children. Three medical camps were organized where 379 people came for treatment.
Swarnivar supports the education of children in these villages. Vibha funds the training of teachers to support their mission (4). More details can be found at their website: http://projects.vibha.org/projectfilter/funding-full-time-swanirvar-trainer
- Cyclone Amphan caused an estimated $13.2 billion in damage in India’s West Bengal: government source – CNN [Internet]. [cited 2020 Jun 17]. Available from: https://www.cnn.com/2020/05/22/weather/cyclone-amphan-damage-intl-hnk/index.html
- Ellis-Petersen H, Rahman SA. Kolkata surveys damage after bearing brunt of Cyclone Amphan. The Guardian [Internet]. 2020 May 21 [cited 2020 Jun 17]; Available from: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/may/21/kolkata-surveys-damage-after-bearing-brunt-of-cyclone-amphan
- May 21 A/ U, 2020, Ist 08:15. Several killed, 5500 houses damaged in North 24 Parganas as cyclone Amphan hits West Bengal [Internet]. Mumbai Mirror. [cited 2020 Jun 17]. Available from: https://mumbaimirror.indiatimes.com/news/india/several-killed-5500-houses-damaged-in-north-24-parganas-as-cyclone-amphan-hits-west-bengal/articleshow/75858570.cms
- Vibha Project: Swanirvar-Funding for teacher trainer [Internet]. [cited 2020 Jun 17]. Available from: http://projects.vibha.org/projectfilter/funding-full-time-swanirvar-trainer