Rebuilding lives of flood-affected families in Kerala

Rebuilding lives of flood-affected families in Kerala

The 2018 floods in Kerala ravaged the state and had a devastating impact on lives and livelihoods of everyone affected – from women and girls to men and boys, and from differently abled to the transgender community. People from economically backward communities lost all means to earn a living and risked being pushed further into poverty; the situation is worse for the marginalised communities and groups. 

In 2019, after the initial relief and response was over, Oxfam India with support from its partners went back for the recovery phase and implemented a long-term rebuilding programme in Kerala. The programme would enable affected communities access livelihood opportunities. The programme includes skill building, financial grants for small scale business, and support for existing livelihood practices.

Oxfam India conducted the following activities across Kerala:

•    15 awareness sessions were conducted in schools on Child Protection, Child Abuse, Gender Inequality, Cyber Protection and Cyber Bullying in Community

•    70 contaminated open wells were chlorinated

•    Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) mapping exercise conducted in 38 wards to understand the WASH needs in community

•    Task Force Equipment kits have been handed over to 11 Gram Panchayats so that they are better equipped to face any future disasters. The kit contains equipment for disaster search and rescue teams, early warning systems and managing camps for survivors

•    Women from 16 SHGs (Kudumbashree) units, who were affected by the floods, received grants to restart and strengthen income-generation activities

•    100 waste bins were provided to 20 schools for proper solid waste management

•    Two trainings were conducted on Education in Emergencies to build the capacity of 80 school teachers

•    295 women and girls were trained to make eco-friendly, low cost sanitary napkins in Pathanamthitta and Alappuzha districts

•    Women were trained to make bamboo craft in collaboration with our on ground partner. National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad facilitated the trainings


Bamboo craft training

Oxfam India has provided training in bamboo craft to 200 women from 20 SHGs. Through the project, the women were provided adequate training equipment, raw material, and linkages with the market. Oxfam India and its partners built a business model that is entirely run by women.

Oxfam India provided washing machines to women who wash linen from houseboats

The houseboats in Alappuzha’s backwaters bring many economic opportunities for women living along the banks. They earn a living by washing linen from the houseboats and resorts. However, floods damaged their laundry units and washing machines as a result of which the women were manually washing and drying linen. Loss of tourism also affected their income. Oxfam provided washing machines to ease their back-breaking work.

Oxfam worked closely with the Kerala Government’s Poverty Eradication Mission

Oxfam worked closely with the Kerala Government’s Poverty Eradication Mission, ‘Kudumbshree’ to reach out to the most affected groups in Pathanamthitta and Alappuzha districts. Women’s groups lost their businesses to the floods. Oxfam provided them with support in kind, such as utensils, to help them run food units. These women now run street food stalls or cater for large scale events like marriage ceremonies.

Oxfam India supported Fairland Special Group to revive businesses

Fairland Special Group, a SHG of differently abled persons in Alappuzha district used to make paper bags. But after the floods, their production reduced drastically and affected the group’s income. Oxfam provided the group with paper creasing machine and raw materials to help them revive their business. The group also makes other eco-friendly products such as pens and bags. This was an important initiative as this business was the only source of income for the members of the Fairland Special Group.


Oxfam India distributed Task Force Equipment Kits as a part of DRR

Oxfam India distributed ‘Task Force Equipment Kits’ as a part of Disaster Risk Reduction in Idukki and Wayanad districts. The kits contain equipment for disaster rescue teams, camp management, and early warnings for disaster. These include items such as lifebuoy, torch, whistle, life jacket, radio, first aid box, mega phone, mobile phone, aluminium stretcher and a bag to store items.

Oxfam India, with support from donors and partners, responded to floods in Assam, Bihar, Karnataka, Kerala, Karnataka, and Maharashtra. We reached out to 3,31,570 people of 66,314 households. As a part of Disaster Risk Reduction, 3.7 lakh people are trained and now resilient to face the natural disasters in disaster-prone intervention areas.

Donate Now to help us continue supporting flood-affected families.

Humanitarian Response and DRR

Oxfam India saves lives by building the resilience of communities to disasters and conflict

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