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Families lost everything

When Cyclone Idai tore through southern Africa in March, it separated parents and children, ripped up homes and destroyed livelihoods. 

We have worked with our partners Habitat for Humanity to provide emergency shelter in Malawi for families affected the most.

Nearly 2,000 families received ShelterKits, water filters and carriers, mosquito nets, solar lights, and blankets. That's around 10,000 people with a place to call home thanks to your support. 

Watch the video for our latest update. Watch previous video updates here.

Learn more facts about Cyclone Idai here.

Voices of Malawi


Petro and his family have been severely affected by Cyclone Idai.

"The rains were so heavy - there was so much water flooding our house. Then it just washed away. Completely washed away. So we had to run. 

At first, I had the fear, the next thing I thought was that we would die because I had to pick up my children on my shoulders. The water was almost at my neck level."

With your support, we have provided aid to families like Petro's, so they can start rebuilding their lives.

See more photos from Malawi and see how families are showing great resilience and strength. 

See the photos

Cyclone Idai quick facts

  • Cyclone Idai made landfall on 14 March 2019, bringing winds of over 100mph and heavy rains. 
  • Over 3 million people were affected across Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe.
  • Downpours had been affecting the region for weeks, causing severe floods since the beginning of March. This came after a period of severe drought, making the conditions worse. 
  • More than 1,000 people have lost their lives.
  • The category 2 cyclone washed away homes and infrastructure, leaving over 150,000 people homeless.
  • Working with our partners Habitat for Humanity, we've provided emergency aid to nearly 2,000 families in Malawi.

About the flooding

ShelterBox has responded to many countries affected by severe floods. Photo: Niger, 2010.

Flooding can be extremely damaging, even life threatening, for the families that experience it. 

In Malawi the flooding has devastated land, livestock and homes. Vast areas have been left uninhabitable, leaving families homeless and vulnerable. 

Over 1 million people have been affected in the region, with additional fears for further risks to families such as water-borne diseases and malaria. 

Learn more about why floods happen and their devastating effects. 

Read more

Aid items families received

ShelterKit consisting of ropes, tarpaulins, hammer and nails


A selection of hardwearing tools and materials that help families rebuild their homes

Water filter kit

Water filters

These can help families produce safe drinking water, when access to clean water is compromised.

mosquito net

Mosquito nets

Coated with insecticide, these can protect families from the increased risk of malaria. 

Where else we are working

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Our work in the Philippines

The Philippines is hit by a series of deadly natural disasters every year. Find out more about how we’ve responded to disasters over the years.