Give to Disaster Relief--Madagascar
Your faithful giving is deeply appreciated.
Madagascar – Cyclone Giovanna
Cyclone Giovanna struck Madagascar in the early hours of February 14, 2012, south of the port town of Toamasina and then carved a path through heavily populated areas towards the capital, Antananarivo. At least 10 people were killed from the cyclone and there have been reports of the cyclone uprooting trees, damaging infrastructure, and causing landslides and flooding as it moved inland. Details of its full impact remain sketchy, as communications and electricity supplies have been cut.
The cyclone’s intensity had decreased by the time it reached Antananarivo, but winds of about 180km/h whipped through the capital, interrupting electricity and water supplies and tearing down billboards. Several houses collapsed, although there were no reports of casualties. Cyclone warning broadcasts by Malagasy state radio were interrupted for extended periods.
Damage from high winds and flash floods is expected over a broad area, but especially in coastal areas near where the eye comes ashore. Damage to homes, school and church buildings, bridges, roadways, and crops are anticipated.
Giovanna comes at a particularly difficult time for the Malagasy people. February is in the ‘hardship’ period – when many people have very low or non-existent food reserves as they wait for the next harvest. This year poverty has been made much worse due to Madagascar’s ongoing crisis in the wake of the 2009 coup, leaving families without the means to deal effectively with a major natural disaster.
An appeal for help from PC(USA)’s partner church in Madagascar, the FJKM, is expected within a few days. Presbyterian Disaster Assistance (PDA) will respond to the needs of disaster survivors as identified in the FJKM appeal.
How to help
Gifts to help with the response in Madagascar can be given through your local PC(USA) congregation or mailed to the lockbox at Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), P.O. Box 643700, Pittsburgh, PA 15264-3700. Please designate as DR000152-Madagascar.
Act: Sign up to receive PDA RIN (Rapid Information Network) emails to be aware of current responses and urgent needs you can share with your congregation.
Pray: Our best response is prayer. Please pray for those who have suffered loss or trauma due to the cyclone, for those in the flooding areas, and for those who will need basic aid such as food and shelter. Pray that the response of our partner will meet needs and bear the hope of Christ, even through the chaos caused by this storm.
Note: Information for this update provided by IRIN (Integrated Regional Information Networks) humanitarian news and analysis, a service of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs; and by PC(USA) mission coworker for Madagascar, Dan Turk.