Oxfam is currently preparing to respond to the likely humanitarian needs of people now being hit by Hurricane Maria in Dominican Republic. Much of the country is already saturated after the recent heavy rains caused by Hurricanes Irma and José.
Oxfam is sending in two teams of humanitarian experts to Morelos and Puebla, with more on the way, following the 7.1 earthquake that struck central Mexico on September 19th. This is the second earthquake to strike Mexico in less than two weeks.
A magnitude 7.1 earthquake hit Mexico on September 19, killing more than 200 people in the country, most of them in and near Mexico City. According to media reports and Oxfam staff in Mexico, more than 700 people were injured in Mexico City alone.
For the first time in more than a decade, the United Nations reported a sharp increase in hunger around the world.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, Oxfam and its Caribbean partner organisations are helping the most vulnerable people who have lost their homes and livelihoods to recover from the disaster, including ensuring access to clean water and basic sanitation. Irma’s severe flooding and strong winds caused considerable damage to people’s homes, infrastructure and agricultural production.
The people of eastern Cuba face devastation from Hurricane Irma, the first category 5 hurricane to hit Cuban territory since 1932.
Hurricane Irma caused widespread damage overnight. Oxfam teams will immediately assess the needs of the most vulnerable people in the heaviest-hit areas, mainly in the north of both countries.
The strongest storm ever recorded in the Atlantic has caused widespread damage in the already vulnerable islands of the Caribbean, with as many as three million people expected to be affected by the disaster in Haiti alone.
Oxfam is deeply concerned about the plight of more than 160,000 civilians who have crossed the border into Bangladesh, and countless others caught up in the conflict in Rakhine State, Myanmar resulting in a large-scale humanitarian crisis.
Lan Mercado, Oxfam in Asia Regional Director, said:
Oxfam and its partner organisations in the Dominican Republic, Haiti and Cuba are preparing to respond to probable damage from the impact of Hurricane Irma, to help people likely to be hardest hit by the massive storm.