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Madagascar hit hard by recent cyclone

People in the nation of Madagascar are used to the threat of cyclones as the country sees about 60 percent of the storms that build across the Indian Ocean. However, the most recent cyclone, Giovanna, hit the nation with almost no warning, leaving many homeless and without water or food security, IRIN reports. The BBC reports that Giovanna had winds up to 120 miles per hour.

According to IRIN, the town of Brickaville on the east coast of the country was the hardest hit, with nearly 70 percent of all homes, buildings and other structures severely damaged. Thus far, 23 people have been killed, with thousands more seeking aid.

Giovanna also knocked out the town's water pump, leaving many to drink from untreated wells, which could cause a spread of waterborne illnesses at any time. Aside from a lack of clean water, many are suffering from hunger and the need for food grows each day.

"The [aid] supplies come in waves," Emma Zafiarisoa, a humanitarian working for the NGO St. Gabriel, told the publication. "We managed to get drinking water to the first 2,000 flood victims, but it's not enough. We have materials for 5,000 people, but after our evaluation there might be as many as 50,000 victims who need supplies."

For now, aid workers are trying to ration the supplies in order to get food, water and medical treatment to those residing further away from the city.
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