Many survivors of the recent floods in the Upper East Region are still without food and shelter.
Although government has started distributing aid to some of these victims, many families, especially those in hard-to-reach areas, are yet to receive any kind of relief item from the government.
The water from last week’s flooding is now drying up. But in its wake, there is destruction, despair and anxiety amongst survivors.
The Akuteyiri community is one of many within the Builsa North District, hit the hardest.
Back from the rubble, the Ayaribisa family living in this community is building again without a home and with very little food left.
Today, the sun is up and Lizzy Ayaribisa struggles with members of her family to try and see how they can manage with what is left of their properties.
There is sweat on her face as she tries to stop her baby from crying due to obvious discomfort. She tells Joy News her rice farm – which supports the family of 12 – has been taken by the floods. Now, there is nothing to eat, not even food for the baby.
Lizzy and her one-year-old daughter, together with two older women now have to manage in the tent the Ghana Red Cross Society has provided.
Red Cross and NADMO officials inspect the tent
The rest of the family have to sleep in the open and pray it does not rain again.
“My whole life is gone. I don’t have a room. All of them have collapsed. We sleep in this tent that Red Cross erected for me but even then, when it rains, water comes inside (the tent)”, she says.
Many families like Lizzy’s are hoping to rebuild but have no money.
The family’s belongings drying out in the sun
Maxwell Ayaribisa, Lizzy’s brother told us he lost goats as well his groundnuts and millet farms, leaving him with no property he could sell to raise money and rebuild their home.
“The mud walls are not strong so when it when rains, they can easily collapse. We are pleading with NADMO to help us with cement and zinc to reconstruct our home”. Maxwell said.
Help from the government is yet to get to many, like this family. Instead, aid workers like the Ghana Red Cross Society is stepping in.
The family has already started rebuilding their mud houses
Paul Woomah, the Upper East Regional Director of the Ghana Red Cross Society described the disaster as “a humanitarian crisis”. He said there was “anger, confusion and hopelessness” on the faces of many survivors of the floods.
Elsewhere in the village of Chuchuliga, there were people who now had to depend on the classrooms in the community basic school for shelter. But they could only have access to the classrooms when school closes.
Some of them were very old and others had physical challenges but there was nowhere else to turn.
The National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO) says it has already distributed aid to many of the survivors but there was more on the way for those in communities that are hard to reach like Akuteyiri.
Jerry Asamani, the Upper East Regional Director for NADMO said; “The roads in some of the communities are unmotorable so it will take some time for us to reach them” (with aid).
The rains are not gone yet, leaving these fragile families in anguish and hopelessness, as they wait for help to reach them soon.
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