Escape: Dercia Jose Maunze managed to walk to safety in a neighbouring village after torrential rain caused flooding in Mabote
The young student escaped the rising waters, but her village was cut off when roads were washed away
Dercia Jose Maunze’s life was turned upside down when Cyclone Freddy hit her small village in the Mabote district of Mozambique on 24 February.
Heavy rains and flooding destroyed homes and food reserves, crops and access roads.
The 18-year-old student managed to walk to safety in a neighbouring village after rising waters reached chest height. Mabote is now isolated because roads have been washed away or blocked by fallen trees. Cell phone signal disappeared.
Dercia still has no idea what is left of her home. She has been sheltering in resettlement accommodation with some other girls her age.
ForAfrika spent about 12 hours trying to get to her village to deliver essential supplies but had to abandon the mission. Delivery trucks kept getting stuck in knee-high mud.
“I’m really worried,” she said. “I also want to get back to school.”
ForAfrika staff flew to Mabote by helicopter on Wednesday to meet with local authorities to decide how to assist the more than 4,000 who are still stranded in the area.
“The situation is critical because of the mobility challenges across the district. Information on damages is scarce and the number of displaced people keeps rising.
“They are desperate for food and other essential items,” said Arcenio Sebastiao, ForAfrika’s communications officer, who spent the night in a village when one of the helicopters broke down.
“Hygiene kits and special water purification tablets are vital as drinking water becomes contaminated by the floods. New cases of diarrhoea are on the rise at resettlement centres,” he said. “We are scared of water-borne diseases spreading quickly.”
ForAfrika has committed to delivering 5 tons of fortified rice to resettlement centres and essential supplies to at least 300 households. Your donation will help to provide families with life-saving provisions. Read more about our response here