Episcopal Conference of Malawi (ECM), through the Catholic Development Commission in Malawi (also known as Caritas Malawi) of Mangochi Diocese, has disclosed that it will distribute K79 million worth of food and non-food supplies to 2, 000 households, which were affected by the effects of Tropical Cyclone Freddy in Machinga district.
CADECOM sourced K100 million from Caritas Italiana of which K79 million was used to procure clothes, maize flour, cooking oil, beans, sugar and sanitary pads, which have been distributed to the beneficiaries under Mpiri Deanery.
Speaking after presenting the donation at Nsanama Catholic Parish on Thursday, Mangochi Diocese Pastoral Secretary, Father Medrick Mlava, said the donation is aimed at alleviating suffering among the affected families.
“The church believes in the dignity of human life; hence it is always concerned when natural disasters cause loss to life or damage to property that support livelihood. That’s why we approached CADECOM to ask for support towards the people who were affected by the disaster,” said Mlava, adding the church did not consider one’s political and religious affiliation in identifying the beneficiaries.
Diocesan CADECOM Coordinator for Mangochi Diocese, Pieter Nthenda, described the donation as a sign of solidarity with the affected families as well as the Government of Malawi in a time of tragedy.
However, Nthenda emphasized that the donated supplies were not enough to enable the survivors to recover from the loss.
He appealed to the Government and other players to continue mobilizing resources for the survivors to stand on their own.
“Large hectares of staple and cash crops such as rice and maize were submerged in water. As such, the recovery process would require that they should be supported with farm inputs for both irrigation and rain-fed farming in the next growing season,” he said.
Davie Kachepa, a representative of the beneficiaries, said he lost everything valuable, including foodstuffs and kitchen utensils, to the storm.
Kachepa therefore commended the Catholic Church for the donation, saying it will go a long way in addressing some of the challenges in the recovery process.