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Wednesday, June 1, 2016


The Sri Lanka Red Cross Society has now ended the emergency phase of its operations for floods and landslides in the recent days, that affected closer to half a million people in Sri Lanka. From May 14, heavy downpours caused by a tropical depression in the Bay of Bengal have caused extensive flash-floods which, at their peak, affected over 420,000 people across 22 of the country’s 25 districts. 

As of now, 105 people are known to have died and many remain missing, most as a result of two deadly landslides in Aranayake, in the hills of Kegalle district.
During the emergency phase the Red Cross managed to reach over 200,000 people directly and indirectly through first aid, providing of food and dry rations, emergency evacuation, search and rescue, distribution of non-food relief items, psychological support and through providing support for people housed at temporary camps.

From 1st June 2016, the operation will move on towards focusing on longer term recovery and reconstruction needs of the people affected by floods & landslides. In the first phase the SLRCS with support from the International Federation of Red Cross & Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) aims to reach 40,000 people with aid over the next 18 months. The support will consist of providing relief items, cash transfers that will help households recover or diversify their livelihoods by establishing agriculture and livestock projects or small and medium-scale business ventures. Cash transfers coupled with guidance on safer shelter construction will also be channelled to families to make repairs to their homes. 

In Aranayake and Bulathkohupitiya the Red Cross is currently in discussion with Government Authorities in order to provide housing for the people who survived the landslide. A safer location needs to be demarcated by the Government and should be agreed by the people prior to the reconstruction efforts can take place.

Meanwhile SLRCS would like to thank the Three Armed Forces, The Police, The Civil Security Force, Media Organization and Journalists, Civil Organizations, The Corporate Sector, Non - Governmental Organizations, Sri Lankan Diaspora and more so the public of Sri Lanka for answering our call to assist the people affected by floods and landslides. The generosity demonstrated by all has helped us to assist the most vulnerable in this disaster.

As we now move away from the emergency phase we appeal to all to continue to be with the people affected by floods and landslides as they strive to return to normality and to live a dignified life.


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