New dawn! Cyclone Freddy survivors Cross Red zone

Malawi Red Cross Society (MRCS)

When Tropical Cyclone Freddy hit hard Malawi’s southern region in March 2023, survivors lost hope, thought all was over and never imagined Malawi Red Cross Society (MRCS) and its allies would come in to aid their recovery. 

From the narration of a grey-haired Rosina Philemon, who is in her late seventies from Mchenga village, Traditional Authority Nkhulambe in Phalombe district, one can palpably feel the destruction inflicted by Cyclone Freddy. 

Philemon, who was pulled out of the raging waters by an unknown person on that dreadful day, witnessed dead bodies strewn in the floodwaters and watched as all her valuables were washed away.

Together with her husband who is in her eighties, two children and three grandchildren, Philemon has been at Mchenga evacuation camp until April this year when they all moved to a new home, thanks to MRCS and its partners.

Rosina Philemon
Philemon survived

The Society has constructed 45 multi-hazard resilient houses, thereby forming a new village in the area that has been named after Nigerian businessman Dozy Mmobuosi. Cyclone Freddy survivors from villages under T/A Nkhulambe and other surrounding areas have formed the Dozy village. 

Just like Philemon, 51-year-old Magret Linje who is a beneficiary of 54 houses that MRCS and other partners constructed at a new village called Chemusa in Chiradzulu, never missed words to thank the society for the kind gesture.

“We were distressed, we had no shelter, no food and we have been staying in tents at Ntauchira camp for close to a year. So, we are so excited and thankful to the Red Cross and everyone for the new village, Chemusa. We have been given some land for farming activities,” said Linje.

Not only the beneficiaries but also the donors are excited to see the survivors smiling at their new homes following the completion of the recovery phase of the MRCS’s response to Cyclone Freddy. 

Felix Washon
We have completed 136 multi-hazard resilient houses – Washon.

According to MRCS Communication Specialist Felix Washon, the society in partnership with several other donors, has completed construction of 136 multi-hazard resilient houses in five districts.

“We are happy that we have finalised the construction of 136 multi-hazard resilient houses for the people of Phalombe, Chiradzulu, Mulanje, Blantyre and Zomba. We are happy that we can give shelter to these communities. These are very strong and resilient houses,” explained Washon.

However, the Communications officer said the Society is still lacking additional resources to construct more houses for the people that do not have shelter and he wooed the corporate world to continue supporting their recovery initiative. 

Washon further reported that under the recovery phase, the Society has distributed K2.2 billion to people who have not benefited from the 136 houses and he added that they have also distributed 500 goats to 100 affected households.


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