08/25/2015, 00.00
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With the authorities unable to cope, civil society groups organise flood relief

Scores of organisations join to provide relief to 1.6 million people. By the end of the month, plans should be in place to rehabilitate affected villages so that they will not “depend on government’s resettlement plan”.

Yangon (AsiaNews/Agencies) – Around 50 organisations involved in relief efforts in flood-stricken parts of Myanmar (ex Burma) attended a weekend conference in Sittwe, in the country’s north-west, and agreed to coordinate their efforts toward flood rehabilitation programmes in the coming months.

Dr Kyaw Thu, director of the Paung Ku consortium of civil society groups, told The Irrawaddy that conference participants wanted to build on emergency response and information sharing networks developed during the crisis to help villagers in future recovery efforts.

Wunlark Foundation director Khaing Kaung San said that organisations involved in flood relief saw a need for civil society groups to assist in rehabilitation plans, as the Myanmar government did not have the resources to prepare a long-term flood response on its own.

“We don’t want to depend on the government’s resettlement plan, and the rehabilitation period will be more difficult than emergency response, this is why we’re trying to organise,” he told The Irrawaddy.

Plans to merge and coordinate civil society rehabilitation efforts were likely to be finalised by the end of August.

According to government statistics, by Monday the floods had affected more than 1.6 million people across 12 states and divisions.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs reported on Friday that nearly 1 million acres of farmland had been damaged since the floods began, with nearly 400,000 households displaced by the deluge.

The July flooding is the worst environmental disaster in Myanmar since Cyclone Nargis, which claimed the lives of 140,000 people in 2008.

At that time, the country’s ruling military junta was criticised for censoring information and refusing international aid.

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See also
Caritas Thailand sending first aid shipment to Nargis victims
Asian Catholics helping Myanmar cyclone victims
Flooding displaces 53,000 people in Myanmar
06/08/2018 15:51
Bangkok: flood prevention to prevent business and capital flight
Junta says that foreign aid is not needed; Nargis survivors can live on frogs


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