Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Cold Wave Hits the Al-Hoceima Region : Moroccan Red Crescent Responds

Funds from the International Red Cross/Red Cresecent Disaster Relief Fund have been released to address the serious cold wave that has hit the Al-Hoceima region in Northern Morocco. Here is a link to the report they have released. Portions of the report have been pasted below.

The cold wave that affects the last few days Morocco will persist until the end of the week with a peak on Wednesday and Thursday, as announced by the national weather forecast service.

Going about this, the result of a polar air mass that passes through the eastern and central Europe affects northern Africa from Tunisia to Morocco. Minimum temperatures have broken records for the month of February in several regions with low degrees, and very rarely for years, recorded. The temperature was close to minus 7 degrees Celsius on the mountainous regions, from -1 to 3 on the middle and 5 to 8 on the coast.

As consequence, roads and mountain passes were blocked by snowfalls, the electricity was interrupted and some houses suffered structural damages. In addition, with low temperatures, water pipes froze, interrupting the water supply in many regions.
Disaster relief emergency fund (DREF)

Morocco/North Africa: Cold wave

Most parts of the Kingdom felt this unusual cold wave. Given this situation, local authorities and relevant departments have mobilized needed human and material resources (governmental services with different ministries) and operated since Monday several interventions to help and assist the most affected population.

The Moroccan Red Crescent will intervene in two regions to assist 1500 families (7500 beneficiaries) providing food and non food items. Those regions are: Oriental and Taza Al Hoceima Taounat in four localities. The table below shows with -more details- the locations:

Coordination and partnerships
The Moroccan government has provided assistance to the affected population in the early days of the cold wave. The contingency plan was activated Wednesday February 8th in the provinces of Beni Mellal and Azilal, and especially localities into difficult terrain.
This operation involved 11,000 households spread over 154 Villages in provinces mentioned above and these households will receive blankets and food appropriate to the winter season. A number of criteria were put to select beneficiaries as: families with no income (unemployment), families living below the poverty line, Homeless persons and old persons, as well as the level of isolation of villages.
Because of the large number of families to assist, the government looked for the associated movement to contribute in this national solidarity operation in order to alleviate the sufferance of the affected population.

The assistance plan is organized with the participation of the Royal Armed Forces, the (Gendarmerie National) and the Ministry of Interior, which will deploy staff for “Promotion National” (national initiative for human resources development) National Reconstruction, and with input from King Mohammed the fifth Foundation fund for Solidarity. The Moroccan Red Crescent has been involved as usual in this plan and has been assigned to cover affected areas.

To meet the needs of this exceptional cold wave affected population, the Moroccan Red Crescent is requesting support from the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, to provide relief in the form of food and non-food items to affected families.

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