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The Effects of Floods on Developing Communities

As one of the countries with the most floods, Bangladesh has experienced devastation in recent weeks. Bangladesh floods struck the country due to massive monsoon storms, leaving people at risk of drowning, and having to deal with the aftereffects of natural disasters. Flooding of this scale can be incredibly damaging even to developing nations, but the effect that they have on communities that are already struggling is absolutely devastating. Dozens have lost their lives in the floods, whilst as many as 22 have been killed as a result of landslides and electrocutions. Despite this, we don’t yet know the full scale of the damage that has been inflicted on remote areas, meaning that more devastation is sure to be discovered.

Though the obvious effect of flooding is drowning, this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the impact of a natural disaster of this scale. Other factors to consider include economic and non-economic losses, physical and psychological health, and disruption to households, neighbourhoods, and communities.

In a plea for your help, we will go on to discuss the effects of floods on developing countries, such as Bangladesh.

Economic Impacts

Firstly, floods destroy people’s homes and business premises, especially in developing communities in which such structures are poorly built. In the instance that someone’s home has been destroyed, they will have to relocate to temporary accommodation, which often comes in the form of a refugee camp. This economic shift then negatively contributes to their physical health, as the close contact of these camps results in the spread of diseases. Meanwhile, food, water, and medical care are sparse in these environments, meaning people may fall victim to starvation, dehydration, and deadly illnesses.

Additionally, the income generated by business premises in developing countries like Bangladesh is barely enough to cover the cost of living as it is. Most residents in Bangladesh aren’t even able to scrape together enough money for three nutritious meals a day, never mind enough to completely rebuild their businesses. Therefore, if someone’s home somehow manages to survive but their business is destroyed, they’ll eventually lose their home through a lack of financial means. This will further contribute to homelessness, the overpopulation of refugee camps, and the aforementioned effects of such.

Non-Economic Losses

The loss of one’s home isn’t merely about the economic effects; one’s home can be a space of sentiment. Many people in Bangladesh have next to nothing from a financial perspective, but their sentimental belongings are incredibly valuable to them in an emotional capacity.

Physical and Psychological Health

As previously mentioned, flooding itself can lead to drowning, whilst effects of such, including landslides and electrocution, can result in injury and death. On top of this, the effects of homelessness can be detrimental to one’s physical wellness, whilst waterborne diseases can also be contracted via the consumption of contaminated water.

In addition to the physical effects of flooding, the psychological impacts of such can be just as deadly. For instance, some people may die from the sheer stress of the event, and others will be plagued by anxiety for the rest of their lives.

Household Disruption

Floods can result in the displacement of individuals, including children. Therefore, members of households could be separated from one another, leaving them unsure as to whether their family members are dead or alive.

In Bangladesh, women are widely regarded as homemakers, meaning a lone woman would be unable to provide for herself. As a result, displaced women and children are placed in especially vulnerable positions, due to their inability to earn an income. This makes them more susceptible to the likes of abuse and exploitation.

Neighbourhood and Community Changes

In remote areas, the sense of community is incredibly strong; however, the destruction of neighbourhoods sadly undermines this. For many people in Bangladesh, a united community is all they have, and this being destroyed leaves them with nothing.

The Specific Effects of the Recent Bangladesh Floods

As the worst flood that the Sylhet region of Bangladesh has seen in 122 years, the healthcare facilities in the region are struggling to cope with the demand. Consequently, people aren’t being treated for life-changing injuries or deadly diseases.

This specific incident has left four million people stranded, 1.6 million of whom are children. 36,000 of these children have sought refuge in overcrowded shelters, whilst schools have been forced to close their doors, leaving children without a safe haven amidst the chaos.

The current crisis calls for the distribution of safe water to take priority, as waterborne diseases are critical in scenarios such as this. Despite this, we require your help to make this happen.

Help Bangladesh Combat the Effects of Flooding with Muslim Aid

The floods of Bangladesh have destroyed an already struggling community. Please, support the people of Bangladesh by donating to our emergency appeal

We are a faith-based British international charity that provides help to people who are victims of natural disasters or conflict or suffering from poverty, hunger, disease, homelessness, injustice, deprivation or lack of skills and economic opportunities.

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