Cyclone Idai - A story of Recovery

November 7, 2022

Jane Rangwana, right and her mother, left, standing in front of their 5 roomed house which was repaired by UNDP after the impact of Cyclone Idai.

In March 2019, Cyclone Idai hit the Eastern Region of Zimbabwe with strong winds and heavy rains that resulted in loss of life and damage to critical infrastructure like schools, homes, and clinics. Almost 18 months after this disaster, communities in Chimanimani and Chipinge are still rebuilding.

Jane Rangwana, a 46-year-old widow of ward 10 in Chipinge recalls how her house was damaged during the cyclone,

“The rain and wind were so strong that evening, I did not think they would stop. The roofing sheets were blown of the house and the veranda collapsed. All my livestock and crops were destroyed’

With her house severely damaged, Jane and her three children sought refuge in her mother’s kitchen until she could build a pole and mud house shelter. Food assistance was offered by donors to families who had lost their food source along with tents for temporary shelter. When the tents were being distributed Jane was hopeful that she would receive one, but she was unfortunately excluded from the group of recipients. Following this disappointment, Jane was relieved to learn that she would be one of beneficiaries of the Cyclone Idai Project funded by the Government of China through the South -South Cooperation Assistance Fund. With support from Econet and UNDP, schools, houses and clinics are being restored in Chipinge.

Through the Cyclone Idai project Jane has been provided with roofing and building materials to rebuild her house. The construction was completed in partnership with the community as local builders and carpenters were recruited to conduct the work. Jane’s home 1 of over 150 houses that have been restored so far

‘It has started raining again and I am confident that our house is now strong enough to protect us from both the rain and wind’