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Humanitarian preparedness and response

Sri Lanka floods and landslides

On 15 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 22 of Sri Lanka's 25 districts.

An estimated 360,000 were displaced in the immediate aftermath of the flooding. 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, Australia's support to UNICEF is helping around 500 children and 2,000 families.

Australia's $500,000 to UNICEF will also help to rebuild and refurbish 22 schools that have been badly damaged. This support will benefit around 4,400 children who attend the schools.

Child Friendly Spaces provide 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 is being used by the SPRINT* initiative, in partnership with the Family Planning Association of Sri Lanka, to respond to the disaster. Within 72 hours, SPRINT had released 750 prepositioned reproductive health kits, initiated the procurement of 500 more and deployed a specialist to conduct a rapid needs assessment.
SPRINT is also using DFAT funds to provide sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services in medical clinics, deliver awareness sessions on SRH and gender-based violence and provide psychosocial support to affected women.

One of the houses destroyed by a landslide in Aranayake village. Credit: SPRINT
SPRINT staff survey destroyed homes in Aranayake. 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).

Last Updated: 12 July 2016
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