IOM launches appeal for USD 3.15 Million to assist Malawi victims of Cyclone Idai

Humanitarian Emergencies

Geneva—The International Organization for Migration (IOM) is asking international humanitarian donors for USD 3.15 million to help the people of Malawi impacted by Cyclone Idai last month. The appeal is to assist IOM teams in Malawi to reach an estimated 110,110 targeted individuals through the end of September 2019. 

In early March, a severe weather system formed off the eastern coast of Mozambique and struck Malawi with heavy rain and strong winds. The system further intensified into Cyclone Idai and made landfall in Malawi on 14-15 March, which led to severe flooding across Malawi’s southern districts. 

According to the Government of Malawi’s figures, more than 868,900 people have been affected, including more than 86,980 displaced, with 60 deaths and 672 injuries recorded. In total, fifteen districts in southern Malawi have been impacted.  

IOM is appealing for USD 1.65 Million for Shelter and Non-Food Items (NFI), USD 750,000 for Camp Coordination and Camp Management (CCCM) and USD 750,000 for teams from IOM’s Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM).  

“IOM is appealing for funding support that it aims to use in providing shelter support for the most vulnerable affected populations using the build back better (BBB) model as a resilience strategy that will afford future use of the same structures by affected populations in the event of another disaster,” Said Mpilo Nkomo, IOM Malawi’s Head of Office.  “Additionally, camp coordination & camp management and DTM activities are being rolled out to build the capacity of office bearers on managing camps, support the establishment of district camp management committees and strengthen the Department of Disaster Management Affairs information management system through application of the DTM.”

Site assessments conducted by IOM’s Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM) teams in the four districts with the highest displacements—Zomba, Nsanje, Chikwawa, and Phalombe— from 25 March to 6 April 2019, recorded that 110,110 individuals (24,887 households) have been displaced throughout 103 sites. Almost all displacement sites are collective centers, where populations fled to existing structures such as churches or schools and are sheltering in and around these buildings.  

However, living conditions are quickly deteriorating, due to overcrowding and the lack of access to basic services. 

With agriculture being the main source of livelihood for the rural population in Malawi, the heavy rains and floods have impacted agricultural activities. As fields are inundated, recently planted crops have been destroyed. Some districts are already reporting food insecurity. According to DTM assessments, the primary need for displaced people is food, followed by shelter.  

IOM recognizes that camps are the last resort, and notes that even now populations report the desire to return home. Only the lack of shelter remains their primary barrier.  

IOM is a member of the Shelter/ NFI / CCCM cluster, led by the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development and the Malawi Red Cross. IOM has been the main partner in CCCM activities since the 2015 floods and has worked closely with the Department of Disaster Management Affairs (DoDMA) to provide capacity building at national and regional level. 

To ensure a more robust and targeted response by the humanitarian community, IOM will implement its DTM program to provide key information and critical insights into the situation on internally displaced and affected persons in Malawi. Specifically, DTM will provide humanitarian stakeholders with a mapping of displacement sites, demographics of the most affected, mobility tracking as populations move to and from sites towards return and relocation, as well as detailed inter-sectorial information on all assessed sites to support strategic decision making around resource allocation. The DTM products will include maps, dashboards, narrative reports and raw data which will be shared with humanitarian partners on a regular basis.  

Similar data is currently being collected for Mozambique and Zimbabwe, ensuring a regional perspective is integrated in the data analysis, including assessment of cross border needs and linkages in the movements of persons affected by the crisis. 

For further information please contact: Mpilo Nkomo, IOM Malawi Head of Office. Tel: + 2715 534 1314. Email: