17 February 2017 SOS Children’s Villages Responds to Needs of Children after Tropical Storm Hits Mozambique Inhambane, Mozambique, February 17, 2017 — Tropical storm Dineo struck Mozambique on Wednesday, February 15, unleashing 60-mph winds and torrential rain on the poor, West African nation. According to the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs more than 500,000 people have been affected. At least seven deaths were reported in the aftermath of the storm, and thousands of homes, schools and health facilities have been damaged. There are six SOS Villages in Mozambique, where about 800 orphaned, abandoned and other vulnerable children are growing up. One of the SOS Villages, located in the town of Inhambane, was significantly affected by flooding, landfalls and power outages caused by the storm. None of the 124 children at the SOS Village in Inhambane were injured during the storm. The other five SOS Villages were not immediately affected. Simao Chatepa, Program Manager for SOS Children’s Villages in Mozambique, reported that nearly all of the 15 homes at the SOS Village in Inhambane were heavily damaged by powerful winds and rain. Efforts are under way today to transfer the children from the SOS Village in Inhambane to other SOS Villages and homes where Dineo had no immediate impact. The families for the time being have access to food, water and electricity. “The village director assured me they have food and that the SOS Mothers were able to prepare warm meals for the children,” Chatepa said. “However, restocking of food is going to be an issue because of shortages in the community and the transportation infrastructure has been badly disrupted.” Simiao Mahumana, National Director of SOS Children’s Village in Mozambique, said an assessment would be made to determine the fastest way to provide temporary accommodation for children and families affected, including families in other SOS programs like the SOS Family-Strengthening Program, which helps strengthen at-risk families so that they can stay together. SOS is deploying additional resources to support the emergency response team on the ground that is supporting affected children and families. SOS Children's Villages in Mozambique SOS Children's Villages was founded in Mozambique in 1986. Apart from providing family-based care at six SOS Villages, the organization’s main aim has been to strengthen at-risk families. Currently, our organization is supporting children and youth in Mozambique through day care, education, medical services and vocational training. Children whose parents cannot take care of them grow up in a loving home in one of the SOS Families.