On September 30th, 2017, the United States Ambassador to Rwanda Erica Barks-Ruggles authorized over 42 million RWF for immediate emergency response to destruction caused by September’s heavy rain storms. The relief funds will aid families whose needs were identified by the Government of Rwanda’s Ministry of Disaster Management and Refugee Affairs (MIDIMAR). The aid was provided to World Vision to assist the Government of Rwanda in replacing emergency relief supplies for 5,000 households with items such as jerrycans and hygiene products.
The start of Rwanda’s second rainy season has been marked by heavy rain storms that have caused flooding, the destruction of housing, crops, bridges, and loss of life. According to MIDIMAR at least five people were killed and 5,461 houses had been destroyed or damaged since the beginning of September. Preliminary information has indicated that the most affected districts are: Gicumbi, Ngoma, Gatsibo, Rwamagana, Gisagara, Huye, Rubavu, Rusizi, and Nyamasheke. Damage also affected roads, livestock, water supply lines, electrical lines, schools, and churches.
Given the strong partnership between the United States and the Government of Rwanda and its people, and the impact of the disaster on very poor individuals, U.S. Ambassador Erica Barks-Ruggles has determined that the mobilization of U.S. Government resources to assist the emergency response is warranted.