The people of KwaZulu Natal have been facing another mega-storm and the effects of it. According to reports, some areas in the province received up to five months of rainfall in one day. The damage has been spreading with extensive flooding, mudslides and collapsing of roads, bridges and homes. There have been several deaths and many injuries already reported. However, many relief organisations are already working on the ground to help. The Daily Vox rounds up which relief efforts you can contribute to and how to help.
One of the best ways to help is to not spread fake news
While there is a necessity to inform and share information about what is happening, it is important to verify information. Spreading fake news and misinformation such as videos which are not from the floods can cause trouble instead of helping. It’s important to verify your information before sharing images and videos that might not even be from this time.
Follow verified information
There is usually a lot of misinformation and information around evacuations and what people should be doing during these kinds of situations. It’s best to share verified information. This means information from official sources like the local government departments or verified news reports. If a person is looking for area specific information, it’s better to look for it on community Whatsapp groups or from local government officials like councillors or mayors instead of on Twitter and Facebook.
For example: on Tuesday, at around noon, the mayor of eThekwini, Mxolisi Kaunda urged residents to evacuate their homes if the structure seemed unstable and instead seek shelter at community halls. “It’s better to leave your home than to be washed away with it. Our priority is to save lives.”
Donate to official organisations
During times like these many people will put out calls for donations. Perhaps they are asking for money or in kind donations for family and friends who have lost their belongings or worse. Again, it’s important to verify the information. If that’s not possible, it might be safer and better to donate to established organisations.
Some of the organisations who have already put out calls for donations and are working on the ground include Penny Appeal, Gift of the Givers and the SPCA amongst others.
Contributions into Gift of the Givers:
Standard Bank, Pietermaritzburg
Account number 052137228
Branch Code 057525
Ref: KZN Floods
Assist with relief efforts
Many people might be unable to donate money or in-kind towards the relief efforts. However, if a person is from the area and it is safe to do so, there are many relief efforts to assist with. There are clean-up campaigns taking place and delivering of aid to be in need.
This piece will be updated with further information as it becomes available.