Cyclone Pam: Catastrophic Damage on Farm Products on the Self-Sufficient Vanuatu Island

AAR Japan, with their headquarters located in Tokyo, is conducting a damage assessment brought by Cyclone Pam in Vanuatu. In Vanuatu, agriculture is the main source of livelihood, hence people's lives are largely self-sufficient. Since Cyclone Pam wreaked most of the agricultural land, an emergency assistance is urgently needed to resume agriculture.

Tanna Island suffered severe damage by Cyclone Pam. The picture captures a collapsed concrete building. (Tanna Island, Vanuatu, March 21st, 2015)
Fukuro KAKIZAWA from the AAR Japan Tokyo Office has been carrying on an assessment on Efate Island where Port Vila, the capital of Vanuatu, is located and on Tanna Island, which suffered a severe damage. The assessment revealed that for the most part houses are built simply and of which  are thus frail, suffered catastrophic damages. Moreover, the tropical cyclone leveled most of the agricultural products to the ground. This causes immediate food insecurity, and long-term impact on agriculture as industry.

The Government of Vanuatu has decided to take on large scale distribution of food supplies. Under such circumstances, AAR Japan will distribute necessary living items from tomorrow on and assist the victims with vegetable seeds to recover agriculture promptly in the eastern part of Efate Island.

* The assessment team, established by Japan Platform (JPF) which supports the Humanitarian Assistance and Emergency Relief, is a joint team of JPF and its member NGOs.

Fukuro KAKIZAWA, AAR Tokyo Office
KAKIZAWA has been in charge of Afghanistan and Pakistan operations at AAR Japan Tokyo Headquarters from May 2013. He also engaged in emergency assistance for Typhoon Haiyan, which hit the Philippines in 2013. He is 34 years old.

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Japanese-English translation by Ms. Keiko Machida
English editing by Ms. Hanna Käyrä

The article on this page has been translated by volunteers as part of the AAR Japan's Volunteer Programme. Their generous contributions allow us to spread our activities and ideas globally, through an ever-growing selection of our reports from the field.