On Sunday, the category 5 tropical cyclone made a landfall on the South Pacific island as the most powerful storm recorded in the Southern Hemisphere. The storm did not make a direct hit on the country’s capital, Suva, but wreaked havoc on Koro and numerous country’s other islands.
Two boys are under a bus shelter that is supporting a fallen tree in the village of Talecake, Fiji, Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2016, after cyclone Winston ripped through the island nation.
Taito and his family formed a partnership with the charity a year ago, and welcomed a team of 17 student volunteers to help build the home, as part of a Habitat for Humanity’s programme.
Radio New Zealand reports that New Zealand, Australia, and France have sent relief flights and the United States, China, India, and the European Union have all offered financial assistance.
Home to 900,000 people, Fiji has more than 100 inhabited islands, and authorities are having difficulty communicating with some of the more remote islands in the wake of the cyclone. They’ll distribute school bag kits to students so that they are well prepared.
Besides, at least 21 people were suffering serious injuries, Xinhua quoted Akapusi Tuifagalele, director of Fiji’s National Disaster Management Office, as saying.
Officials are also warning of the threat of dengue and zika spreading, as both viruses are carried by mosquitoes which can breed in stagnant water left by the storm.
The death toll in cyclone-ravaged Fiji has risen to 42 as New Zealand Defence Force ships prepare to depart with supplies. In some cases, he said, entire communities might be moved to safer ground when it comes time to rebuild.
“Alongside lifesaving aid like food, water and healthcare, we need to ensure that children do not continue to be traumatised and distressed by what they have experienced”, the agency’s local chief Iris Low-McKenzie said.
“They’re crying, they’re stressed, they’re upset, they don’t know what tomorrow will bring”, she said.