ShelterBox, which just renewed its affiliation with Rotary International for another three years, has been busy this summer responding to disasters around the world, many of which get little coverage in the international media.
Flooding in Sri Lanka, a typhoon in Fiji, an earthquake in Ecuador, and the ongoing conflict in Syria are just a few of the 2016 deployments. Here are situations that the ShelterBox Operations Team is currently monitoring:
• Louisiana: Flooding — At least 40,000 homes damaged, thousands displaced and 11 people killed in some of the worst flooding in Louisiana history.
• California: Wildfire — The 18,000-acre Blue Cut fire has burned through rural communities in California, triggering evacuation orders for more than 82,000 residents as 700 firefighters battle the blaze.
• Arequipa, Peru: Earthquake — A 5.4 magnitude earthquake struck in the Caylloma province of Peru damaging houses, schools and highways. The quake struck a day before the anniversary of a 2007 earthquake in Peru that that left more than 500 people dead, 1,300 injured and around 200,000 homeless.
• Mosul, Iraq: Conflict — It is likely that up to one million people could be displaced from Mosul as an expected offensive begins this month. ShelterBox is looking into how to best support refugee camps outside the city that are already overstretched.
• Syria: The city of Alepo is surrounded and cut off. Right now, the Syrian Government and rebel forces are locked in conflict over the divided city of Aleppo, with essential aid lifeline, the Castello Road, now impassable. An estimated 300,000 civilians, 60% of them women and children, are caught in the crossfire with dwindling supplies of food and water. The situation is dire.
• Multi-country Refugee Problem: ShelterBox has been responding to the Syrian refugee crisis since 2012, supporting displaced families with tents, shelter kits and educational equipment, both inside Aleppo and in displacement camps within Syria and refugee camps in neighboring countries including Iraqi Kurdistan, Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey, and Greece. ShelterBox’s Operations team is monitoring the latest developments, and is in constant contact with colleague organizations on the ground in Syria.