Questions and Answers
How many aid workers does Oxfam have working in Myanmar?
Oxfam International currently does not run operational programs in Myanmar. Therefore our aid effort will be channeled through partner organizations with a mixture of cash funding, technical expertise and equipment where required.
Has Oxfam launched an appeal to assist the people affected by the Myanmar cyclone?
Not at this time, as we are unsure of needs and restrictions on our ability to spend funds. Oxfam International has pledged $1.8 million from their catastrophe fund to be disbursed to agencies already working on the ground in Myanmar such as the UNICEF and local Myanmar partners – right now that’s the best way we can help save lives and assist people in Myanmar.
What are some of the challenges the international community faces in responding to this humanitarian emergency?
The aid effort faces huge challenges. Immediate needs are known to be shelter, water, food, and public health. Some 24 million people live in the areas affected by the storm. Communications are down in the cyclone-hit areas, roads have been washed away and getting aid to people will be very difficult. The international and the national community needs to be both quick to respond to this crisis and ensure the needs of those affected are met.
How long will the aid effort last?
It’s too early to know. But what’s clear is this is a major humanitarian emergency affecting up to one million of the poorest people in South East Asia. The relief phase of the operation is likely to take at least six months followed by a lengthy rebuilding phase.
Can I donate goods in kind to Oxfam such as blankets and medical equipment?
Oxfam does not accept goods in kinds. Transporting in kind donations is prohibitively expensive and time consuming. Where possible Oxfam and partners purchase relief items locally to keep costs low as well as to help stimulate the local economy.