Bringing Relief To Families: Kerala Flood Response

Bringing Relief To Families: Kerala Flood Response

Ammini, Kunjipennu, Pathumma and Susheela have a few things in common. They are from Kerala and were drastically affected by the 2021 floods. They were all also facing immense financial struggles both before and after the pandemic, when the floods worsened their financial situation.

In the wake of the Kerala floods, Oxfam India conducted a Rapid Needs Assessment and coordinated with the affected communities, district administrations, Gram Panchayats and Sphere India. Following which, the ‘Kerala Landslide and Flood Response Programme 2021’ was launched. Under this, 2771 families received food and relief kits.

The districts of Idukki, Alappuzha, Pathanamthitta and Kottayam in Kerala were affected the most. Majority of the people who were impacted by the floods and landslides belonged to Dalit, Adivasi and Muslim communities. Here are the stories of four families who received relief kits, comprising food and hygiene items.

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Ammini Kuttapan is a 65-year-old lady from the Scheduled Tribes community. She lives in Kollamula village, in Pathanamthitta district. She lives with her only son who is a daily wage worker and the only earning member in the family.

Most of his earnings were used to support Ammini’s medical expenses. The high cost of medicines left the family with no savings. The floods cut off her son’s source of income and further set them back financially. The relief materials provided by Oxfam India helped the family to sustain themselves during this crisis.

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Kunjipennu is a 100-year old and is bedridden. Also from the Scheduled Tribes community, she lives in Kollamula village, Pathanamthitta. She has two sons and is currently living with her daughter-in-law and their children. Her daughter-in-law is a member of a self-help-group, which helps the family with their income. This family of seven were drastically affected by the floods and were glad to receive relief material from Oxfam India, which helped them get through a difficult few weeks.

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Pathumma is a 95-year-old woman from the Muslim community from Kokkayar, in the Idukki district. She suffers from back problems. She lives with her eldest daughter Ayesha, an intestine cancer patient. The pandemic and the floods worsened their financial and health issues, and left them dependent on community support.

Pathumma’s family received food and hygiene kits from Oxfam India after the floods. During Post-Distribution Monitoring, they revealed that the useful and quality-rich contents of the food kit was a tremendous amount of help to them.

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Susheela is a 55-year-old woman from the Ezhava community from Kollamula village, in Kerala’s Pathanamthitta district. She has a husband and son who works as a daily wage worker. The family also sells honey, flowers, wood and frankincense to make ends meet.

While the family was already struggling financially, COVID-19 and the floods made their financial situation even worse. They lived in a house without a door, and the floods destroyed their living quarters and left them with no drinking water security. The food and hygiene kits distributed by Oxfam India helped them through a very difficult time.

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