In response to the floods that devastated Paraguay in June this year, the European Union is allocating €250 000 to help the most affected populations with immediate relief assistance. This will benefit around 1 500 families including those currently staying in emergency shelters of the capital, Asunción, and those in isolated locations in other affected areas of the country.
Heavy rainfall and the overflowing of two main rivers has wreaked havoc across the country, displacing thousands and destroying crops and houses. Water levels have started to decrease, but some regions may remain isolated or flooded for several months. EU assitance will be channelled through a consortium set up by Oxfam and COOPI, enabling access to decent sanitation facilities and safe water as well as the provision of food assistance. Actions will be coordinated with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO).
"We'd like to express our solidarity with the Paraguayans and contribute to the relief effort. The situation is dramatic for thousands of people who have suffered massive losses," said Álvaro Vicente, Head of ECHO South America's Office.
Since 1994, the EU has released €12 million in relief assistance to Paraguay. A total of €2.5 million have been allocated in 2013-2014, for three different interventions: the Disaster Preparedness Programme (DIPECHO), interventions aimed at boosting the resilience of local communities hit by drought in El Chaco, and an emergency operation in response to the 2013 floods.