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Disaster Management Program

Location: Kendrapara District, Odisha

The floods of 2014 left more than nine lakh people, across 23 Odisha districts, marooned and homeless. The worst affected were the people of Jajpur, Kendrapara and Jagatsinghpur districts, where the district administration, in the aftermath of the floods, focused its evacuation and relief work. But the biggest challenge faced by the administration once the waters receded, was a plethora of ailments and epidemics like diarrhea, cholera, skin diseases and general fever, cough and colds among the flood-affected people. A more long-term problem was that the open wells, which were a primary source of drinking water for the people in these districts, had become contaminated. Urgent steps were required to clean and restore the wells, and spread awareness among the local people about purifying their drinking water.

SNEH rushed a team of doctors, paramedics and volunteers to Patamundai Block in Kendrapara district, to administer emergency healthcare to the flood-affected people. SNEH organized health camps in the remote areas and distributed essential medicines, while simultaneously carrying out awareness programs about flood-related health hazards.

Apart from providing on-ground logistical support — transport, hospitality, food, snacks, bottled water etc to the medical teams — SNEH distributed generic drugs for ailments like diarrhea, cholera, fever, cough and cold, and skin diseases. Affected people were supplied with halogen tablets and bleaching powder, procured from the district health authorities, to purify their drinking and other water sources.