Urgent Humanitarian Assistance Needed for 400,000 People Displaced by DRC Volcano Eruption

Please see below statement from Refugees International Senior Fellow Sarah Miller: 

“Some 400,000 people have evacuated Goma, one of the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s largest cities, after the Mount Nyiragongo volcano erupted last week, and brought on earthquakes and fears of additional eruptions in recent days.

Those who have fled to border areas with Rwanda are finding themselves in desperate need of humanitarian assistance. MSF has warned of cholera risks, and many lack adequate shelter, with some sleeping on the side of the road. Nearly all are in need of food, medicine, and drinking water. UNICEF also reported hundreds of children separated from their families during the evacuation, and worry up to 280,000 children could face displacement from the threat of the volcano.

The Rwandan and Congolese governments and the international humanitarian community need immediate resources to mobilize humanitarian assistance and coordinate a response. Food, water, shelter, and medical attention are urgently needed, including additional jerrycans, hygiene kits, and tarpaulins. Host communities supporting the displaced also need support from the international community, and urgent family reunification efforts must be coordinated by the UN and Congolese government.”

For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact Sarah Sheffer at ssheffer@refugeesinternational.org or +1 202 540 7029.

PHOTO CAPTION: Aerial photo of the town of Sake. The Nyiragongo erupted on May 22, 2021, and about half a million inhabitants evacuated Goma, and mainly to Sake. Photo by ALEXIS HUGUET/AFP via Getty Images.