News Post

Help now: Tropical Cyclone Kenneth flattens entire villages in Mozambique and Comoro Islands

30 Apr 2019

by FBB Staff

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The essence of Humanist giving is helping regions that need it the most. Often this means countries like Mozambique, which are lesser developed and covered less frequently in the press when natural disasters devastate their communities. 

Last month, we alerted you to Cyclone Idai, hitting Mozambique, Zimbabwe, and Malawi with widespread damage, fatalities, and mass displacement. It was one of the worst tropical cyclones on record to affect the Southern Hemisphere, killing more than 1,000 people, misplacing thousands more, and destroying $1 billion in infrastructure. It destroyed Mozambique's port city of Beira and submerged entire villages, vast swaths of land and 700,000 hectares of crops. It killed more than 1,000 people across Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe.

Now, just six weeks later, Cyclone Kenneth has struck the northern part of the country as well as the Comoros Islands Islands off the coast. The storm hit late Thursday, bringing 174 mph winds that have leveled nearly 95% of homes in the port city of Pemba, displacing tens of thousands of people throughout the country.

Kenneth is projected to bring at least twice as much rainfall as Idai at a time when Mozambique is approaching the end of its rainy season and river levels are already high.

The region is still grappling with critically underfunded recovery efforts from Idai along with a cholera outbreak topping 1,400 cases thus far, associated with the storm and subsequent rains. Aid agencies are currently struggling to reach victims of Cyclone Kenneth and assess the full extent of the damage, but we know over 160,000 people have been displaced, 30,000 houses destroyed, and 24,000 people are estimated to be in need of shelter.

Still more damage is expected as the rain continues. The death toll, which stands at 38, is also expected to rise.

Foundation Beyond Belief is working hard throughout our 10th Anniversary year to build our capacity so that in the future, we are able to deploy directly for emergencies like Idai and Kenneth. In the meantime, we are proud to support our ongoing partner, All Hands and Hearts, which is deploying to Mozambique in early May. We worked with All Hands during our deployment to Puerto Rico, and we know they’ll provide an effective, ethical, secular response dedicated to the long-term recovery of the region.

A gift to Foundation Beyond Belief today will not only support All Hands and Hearts’ work in Mozambique, but it will also help FBB grow our scope, build partnerships with thoroughly-vetted charities throughout the world, and facilitate direct Humanist Disaster Recovery where it’s most needed. We hope you’ll help us expand compassionate humanist action globally by becoming a monthly donor today.

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