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ECOWAS provides $440,465 to Red Cross to aid flood victims in Liberia

In a show of humanitarian commitment, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has pledged over $440,000 in support of the Liberian Red Cross’s flood response efforts.

The support is intended for Liberians who were badly affected by devastating flooding in 2022. 

According to a press release, this funding will assist 9,680 individuals representing 1,841 families or households in vulnerable communities, in Liberia. 

The flood crisis left Liberia among the hardest-hit member states within the ECOWAS region.

During a press briefing on Wednesday, 27 September 2023, the Resident Representative of the President of the ECOWAS Commission in Liberia, Amb. Josephine Nkrumah emphasized that flooding has emerged as a pressing humanitarian issue within the ECOWAS member states. 

Amb. Nkrumah emphasized that ECOWAS is not solely focused on elections and political stability but is also committed to social interventions that address the impact of natural disasters and other pressing social issues affecting its member states.

ECOWAS’s Post-Disaster Humanitarian Assistance Project in Liberia aims to promote recovery and enhance the resilience of the most vulnerable individuals who suffered from the 2022 flood disaster. 

The National Disaster Management Agency has designated the Liberia National Red Cross Society as the implementing partner for this crucial project.

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The Resident Representative of ECOWAS expressed unwavering confidence in the Liberian Red Cross’ ability to effectively implement the project and address the devastating aftermath of the flood disaster in vulnerable communities.

 “We are confident that we will reach the target and meet the project objectives,” she affirmed.

The project will primarily focus on providing humanitarian assistance in the areas of water, sanitation, hygiene, and shelter. 

Under the project, the Liberian Red Cross will rehabilitate 40 damaged hand pumps in the flood-affected communities, construct 10 new hand pumps, and establish and train a water management committee to ensure sustainability and resilience building.

Furthermore, the project will provide a range of support to affected households.

This support includes the provision of shelter rehabilitation materials, and essential household items including both food and non-food items to affected families. 

These efforts collectively aim to alleviate the suffering of those still grappling with the consequences of the flood.

The project agreement, which solidified ECOWAS’s commitment to aiding Liberia in its time of need, was signed earlier this year. 

The President of the ECOWAS Commission Dr. Omar Alieu Touray represented the ECOWAS Commission, Minister Varney A. Sirleaf acted on behalf of the Liberian Government, and Mr. Gregory T. Blamoh represented the Liberian Red Cross as the implementing partner.

Henry O. Williams, the Executive Director of the National Disaster Management Agency, expressed his appreciation for ECOWAS’s timely intervention in Liberia. 

He noted that the Liberia project was the first to be approved and funded within the Western African Region, underscoring its importance.

Gregory T. Blamoh, Secretary-General of the Liberian Red Cross, extended gratitude to both the government and ECOWAS for their support. 

He emphasized the growing humanitarian consequences of climate change on communities and hinted at the Red Cross’s consideration of upgrading its response efforts to address the increasing number of affected people.

ECOWAS’s commitment to aiding Liberia in the wake of the 2022 flood disaster highlights the organization’s dedication to not only political stability but also to the welfare of its member states’ citizens. 

As the project unfolds, it is anticipated that thousands of lives will be positively impacted, reinforcing the idea that regional cooperation can bring much-needed relief to those facing dire circumstances.

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