Kailali flood survivors face risk of starvation, diseases, mothers worry about their young children

TIKAPUR, Sept 20: Hundreds of families have been displaced following recent flash floods in Kailali.

The survivors are taking refuge in open highlands and schools. Among survivors, mothers with small children and expectant mothers face additional issues as hunger and disease risk have largely affected them.

Among the people staying in the Bhajani-based Postal Highway area, some are children below two years of age. The displaced are desperately waiting for assistance.

Manisha Dhamala is one among those who is struggling hard to cope with adversities with her seven-month-old baby.

She said she managed to escape possible consequences by carrying her baby promptly upon seeing her home sinking in the flood. She could not bring her belongings with her. She is extremely worried about the health of the toddler.

“I would feed the child additional supplements beside the breast milk, Now we both are facing hunger and the health risk. My child is crying as he is unable to cope with the adverse atmosphere.” She said survivors are additionally victimized by hunger and health issues.

Dipa Sunar and her one-year-old child have been taking shelter in the open for the past two days. “We are the additional victims of hunger and adverse weather.” She wishes there will be someone to offer food to her baby.

Anjali BK who was forced from home with her nine-month-old with the flood entering her home has been on the street since the incident. Floodwater had reached up to her neck when she was rushing towards safety. Her child now suffers from a common cold. She humbly requests the government to reach out to them during this crisis. “We are totally helpless.”

Sanu Pandey of Khallatole of Sonahaphata, Bhajani has a two-year-old child who is surviving on dry noodles and beaten rice. “We are hardly coping with the adverse, but I feel so sorry for my hungry child. Clothes we are wearing are heavy. Rain still continues and I have no idea what happened back home.”

Health workers were deployed at the affected area the same day, informed health coordinator of Bhajani Municipality Kailash Chaudhary.

“We are providing health services to patients with fever, common cold and diarrhea on the streets and distributing medicines. The patients include pregnant women, new mothers and infants. So now, we will care about their nutrition as well,” he said.

Mostly, women, children and elderly people are vulnerable, and have suffered during disasters and pandemic. Women rights activist Nirmala Kadayat stressed the need for the authorities to be aware about ‘special’ problems of women and children in distributing reliefs and other assistance during disasters. New mothers, pregnant women and children need more nutritious diets. “During their menstruation, women need sanitary pads, and other hygienic practices should be adopted. The local government and other concerned authorities should focus on managing toilets and water,” she said.

Citizens should also be aware about incidents of gender-based violence during the crisis, she viewed.

Scores of families at Bhajani in Kailali district have been affected by flooding. The affected people have been taking shelter at relatives’ houses, school buildings and on the streets under the open sky.

-Republica

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