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Sri Lanka floods and landslides

In May 2016 Sri Lanka was hit by severe weather that caused widespread flooding and deadly landslides. More than 100 people were killed by the disaster, which affected 24 of Sri Lanka's 25 districts.

Almost 500,000 people were affected by the flooding and landslides. In response to a request for international assistance by Sri Lankan authorities, Australia contributed $500,000 to UNICEF.

UNICEF provided immediate assistance to children in displacement camps, including the provision of clean water and creating child-friendly spaces. As of June 2016, Australia's support helped around 500 children and 2,000 families. UNICEF also helped to rebuild and refurbish 22 schools that had been badly damaged, benefiting over 2000 children who attended the schools.

Child Friendly Spaces provided children with a chance to learn and play during or after traumatic events which is essential in helping children cope with stress. Credit: UNICEF

A further $50,000 in DFAT's prepositioned funds were used by the SPRINT* initiative, in partnership with the Family Planning Association of Sri Lanka, to respond. SPRINT released 750 reproductive health kits, initiated the procurement of 500 more and deployed a specialist to conduct a rapid needs assessment. SPRINT also used DFAT funds to provide sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services in medical clinics, deliver awareness sessions on SRH and gender-based violence.

One of the houses destroyed by a landslide in Aranayake village. Credit: SPRINT

SPRINT distributed emergency supplies at Rasnayakepura-Kurunegala District for flood affected people within 72 hours of the disaster. Credit: SPRINT.

The supplies were delivered to families most in need following the flooding. Credit: SPRINT


*SPRINT refers to the Sexual and Reproductive Health Programme in Crisis and Post-Crisis Situations, which is funded by the Australia Government and implemented by the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF).

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