Vanuatu and Tuvalu: the Red Cross responds to Severe Tropical Cyclone Pam

Published: 14 March 2015 6:15 CET

By Kate Roux, IFRC

Red Cross teams are assessing the impact of Severe Tropical Cyclone Pam after it made landfall in Vanuatu and Tuvalu last night. “The priority for everyone is shelter, food, water, and first aid,” says Augustine Garae, head of disaster management for the Vanuatu Red Cross as he surveyed the scene in Port Vila.

“We know there has been widespread destruction and many people have lost their homes. But it is taking time to assess the full situation given the communication difficulties”, he says.

There are a total of 26 evacuation centres in Port Vila where the Red Cross is assisting authorities. The military has been tasked with clearing and repairing the roads, and the authorities are working to restore communication with provinces across the country.

In Tuvalu, the Red Cross has distributed a 100 blankets and 100 tarpaulins on Funafuti Island. In coming days, Red Cross staff and volunteers will be conducting house to house surveys in the affected areas. 

Prior to the cyclone’s arrival,  the Vanuatu Red Cross assisted authorities in carrying out evacuations across the country. The Red Cross also coordinated with the NDMO to mobilize volunteers through national radio broadcasts conveying important safety measures. The VRCS has 200 active volunteers who are being mobilized and another 200 volunteers on standby.

The IFRC has allocated 133,000 Swiss francs from its Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) to enable the Vanuatu Red Cross Society to respond to the needs of affected communities.  

  • To view the latest press release, click here
  • To view Fiji Red Cross preparedness activities, click here


For further information, please contact:

In Suva                 

  • Aurélia Balpe; Mob: +679 999 2485 Tel: +679 3311855                                         
  • Email:

In Vanuatu

  • Jacqueline de Gaillande; Mob: +6787743029 Tel: +6797747847              
  • Email: