Cornish charity ShelterBox responding with emergency aid after Malawi flooding

Thousands of homes have been destroyed in the flooding. Credit: ShelterBox

A Cornish charity has been providing emergency shelter in Malawi after severe flooding in East Africa.

ShelterBox is warning more than 12,000 people have been displaced, with many homes still submerged by floodwater.

The flooding has also damaged infrastructure including roads and bridges, and many crops have been destroyed, making it harder for people to access food, water and shelter, the charity said.

It comes after a period of heavy rainfall over the past month.

ShelterBox said many crops have been destroyed. Credit: ShelterBox

ShelterBox said a response team from the charity has been working with locals to distribute tarpaulins, tools, water filters, solar lights, and other essential items.

The team has also been working with local organisations to show people how they can use the tools and tarpaulins to protect their homes, the charity added.

Martin Strutton, Shelterbox response team lead said: "Where the flood water is starting to recede, it's revealing the true scale of damage to homes and belongings that many people don't have the resources to repair or replace."

The charity said many businesses have been destroyed. Credit: ShelterBox

He added that the team have been able to respond "relatively quickly," as aid was stored in a warehouse following Cyclone Freddy in 2023, which killed more than 400 people.

Mr Strutton added the charity is also working with government agencies, the Malawian Red Cross Society and Rotary to find ways to mitigate the impact of future floods.

He said: "Floods, storms and droughts are getting worse, hitting the same places more often and lasting longer. People often don't have time to recover from an emergency before the next takes its toll.

"That's why our focus is supporting flood-affected communities to return home, avoiding people living out in the open in unplanned camps."