Caritas Launches $2 Million Appeal for Bangladesh

VATICAN CITY, JULY 26, 2004 (Zenit.org).- Caritas Internationalis has launched an emergency appeal of nearly $2 million in response to the devastation caused by floods in Bangladesh.

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«Distribution of food and medicine to needy families is a great challenge while the rain and floodwaters continue to pose a threat to the safety of humanitarian aid transport,» Caritas said in statement. Caritas Internationalis is a confederation of 162 Catholic relief, development, and social service organizations.

«With millions of people left homeless or stranded by the flood, however, supplies of food, clean water, and medical support must get to the neediest victims immediately,» it said.

Caritas is distributing emergency food items to 25,000 families in four regions of Bangladesh. The distribution of essential medicines is also under way, and a cash-for-work and housing program is being implemented to assist those who have lost their livelihoods.

When the floodwaters recede, the construction of 5,500 houses is planned for families who have lost their homes.

In late June the region was inundated with floodwater, submerging villages, sweeping away children and other victims.

An estimated 20 million have been affected by the floods in India alone, with an even great number of people affected in Bangladesh when the floods hit their country the first week of July.

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