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Oxfam is well placed to mobilize quickly in the aftermath of the tornado, which hit the region of La Habana.
On the night of Sunday January 27th, a powerful storm and tornado hit the Cuban capital region of La Habana. The government activated an early alert for strong winds. However, the storm far exceeded forecasts.
Preliminary classifications indicate that a level EF4 tornado also touched down. Winds reached 322 km/h leaving 4 people dead and 195 injured. The storm also damaged and destroyed 11 health centres and hospitals as well as 13 educational institutions. It is estimated that more than 500 000 people were affected.
In the immediate aftermath, the Cuban President and other authorities visited the affected areas. Response mechanisms were activated early Monday morning. Oxfam has been in close communication with the Ministry of External Commerce, Investment and Cooperation (MINCEX) and with the Cuban Civil Defense, who are leading and coordinating the response as well as assessing the damage and needs of the impacted population.
Rescue efforts are underway in the most severely impacted areas of La Habana, Mayabeque and Artemisa. Greatest needs include shelter and roofing materials to repair damaged infrastructure, as well as water and sanitation items, to replace those lost or damaged by the storm.
Oxfam Canada is collecting donations to support the Emergency Response in Cuba – click the button below to make your gift through our Emergency Response Fund.
Oxfam in Cuba
Oxfam has been working in Cuba since 1993, supporting local partners in the promotion of equitable and sustainable development. We stand alongside local governments, governmental and non-governmental organizations, academic institutions and communities and aim to strengthen and support sustainable development grounded in gender equality. We support civil participation, local development, food security, gender equality and women's rights, disaster risk reduction and emergency response.