Emergency assistance and disaster prevention

Due to climate change, Mozambique has been hit by disasters with increasing frequency in the last 30 years. Solidar Suisse supports preparation ahead of storms so that the people affected can better protect themselves.

In March 2019, the devastating Cyclone Idai hit Mozambique. Over 1,000 people died and the flooding forced hundreds of thousands to flee their homes. Many of those who fled now live in emergency camps because their farmland and villages were destroyed and are no longer safe. Solidar Suisse provides direct assistance after disasters, working in close cooperation with the humanitarian assistance division of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation. We now help to maintain the water supply in the camps and surrounding communities and work with district authorities to improve disaster prevention.

Climate change is here

Flooding, cyclones and droughts risk becoming more extreme due to climate change. This has significant consequences for the population – destroyed houses and healthcare centres, polluted water wells, failed crops and hungry people with no access to seeds. Extreme poverty and weak state institutions cause people to be heavily hit by disasters and to them barely having access to the resources to help themselves and to fund reconstruction.

Opfer der Dürre in Moçambique Opfer der Dürre in Moçambique

Woman without food due to extreme drought. © Solidar Suisse

Better prevention through participatory debate

Prevention and building resilience among local communities are key to ensuring that disasters do not hit unprepared people.

Solidar Suisse supports district authorities in training local disaster protection committees. These committees raise awareness among the population for the risks and consequences of disasters and inform them of the most important emergency assistance measures. We also help set up early warning systems and run simulation exercises.

Solidar Suisse also champions the participation of inhabitants in discussions on investments in districts and communities. This enables them to highlight weak points with regard to disaster prevention and to give tips on escape routes and places that are safe when flooding hits. When they are involved they are also better informed of protection measures.


After Cyclone Idai, Solidar Suisse provided 15,000 people with access to drinking water in the emergency camps. The distribution of seeds and tools enable people in flooded areas to cater to their own needs once again. Better prevention means that future disasters cause less damage.

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