At the end of January, a local El Niño weather pattern formed in Peru due to an abrupt increase in the surface temperature of the ocean and is expected to continue until at least April. Torrential rains have generated floods and mudslides in 24 out of the 25regions in the country. States of Emergency have been declared in12 regions due to the flooding risk, while seven regions have declared a State of Emergency due to sanitation risks. There has been significant damage to infrastructure and homes. The drainage system in Chiclayo and Piura have collapsed due to the intensity of the rain. Sanitation is also a huge concern as are vector-borne illnesses, especially Zika. Access to potable water, even in Lima, has become scarce. According to the latest National Institute of Civil Defense (INDECI) report, 11,519 houses have collapsed and 12,440 houses are uninhabitable.
INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN RESPONSE EFFORTS
As an emergency has been declared by the government and international assistance has been requested, United Nations Disaster Assessment and Coordination (UNDAC) has deployed a team to the field. The National Humanitarian Network, with the support of the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) is coordinating relief efforts. OCHA has begun carrying out rapid needs assessments in Lambayeque and Piura. The Government of Peru is pledging $750 million for emergency relief efforts and $1.6 billion for economic recovery. The government has set up pumps to hopefully displace some of the water that is overwhelming the spillways. Humanitarian organizations are responding with distributions of water, clothing, food, and other non-food items such has hygiene and school kits.
LWR — ACTIONS TAKEN AND NEXT STEPS
Lutheran World Relief, in coordination with the ACT Alliance and CEDEPAS Norte, is helping those affected by the flooding and landslides by providing humanitarian assistance in three districts and seven communities in the province of Trujillo, in the region of La Libertad, and in the north of Peru (Quirihuac, Plazapampa, Santa Victoria and San Pachuzco in Laredo, Guayabito and Dos de Mayo in Poroto and Simbal in the district of the same name).
LWR is procuring and distributing tents, inflatable mattresses and mosquito nets, as well as conducting trainings on sanitation and hygiene and offering food assistance.
We will reach more than 1,400 families identified as the most affected, giving priority to households headed by women, households with large families, and people with disabilities.
LWR IN THE COUNTRY
With nearly 75 years of demonstrated expertise helping to transform some of the hardest-to-reach places in the developing world, LWR is an innovative, trusted international nongovernmental organization committed to those otherwise cut off from basic human services and opportunities.
LWR helps communities living in extreme poverty adapt to the challenges that threaten their livelihoods and well-being and we respond to emergencies with a long-term view. When a disaster hits — whether it’s a drought, tsunami or civil war — we work alongside communities over months and years to help them recover and adjust to new realities, ensuring that they are prepared to withstand the next unexpected challenge. Regardless of whether these challenges are chronic or acute LWR invests in communities to enable those living in extreme poverty to build the resilience they need to thrive.
LWR has been working in Peru for more than three decades, with a concentration in Huancavelica and Cajamarca Districts. The Peru portfolio has included funding from foundation and corporate donors such as Gold Fields, Ltd.