Emergency Teams Assist Displaced Georgians

ACF teams have been dispatched west of Georgia to help victims of the recent conflict

The humanitarian agency Action Against Hunger (ACF-USA), which has been present in Georgia since 1995, will provide assistance to displaced people in Kutaisi, Georgia’s second largest city, where more than 13,000 have been temporarily accommodated.

Over a week since fighting erupted in South Ossetia, thousands of people continue to seek refuge in many affected cities across Georgia. Action Against Hunger estimates that around 13,000 people from South Ossetia, Gori and neighbouring Abkhazia have fled their homes and taken refuge in Kutaisi, the country’s second largest city. Seeking shelter in 17 collective centres such as schools and stadiums, families are dependent upon external assistance for food and water.

Action Against Hunger’s team in Georgia carried out an assessment of the food situation in collective centres in Tbilisi and Kutaisi. “We found that at least 11 centres require urgent assistance in the capital and that the collective centres in Kutaisi do not have the capacity to assist everyone,” comments Shahnoza Muminova, Action Against Hunger’s Country Director in the Caucasus. A survey carried out in the region found that the price of food items such as rice has doubled in just one month. The price of other basic products like bread and flour also increased in a short space of time.

Members of Action Against Hunger emergency team have joined the existing team on the ground to reinforce activities aimed at providing assistance to the displaced people. An emergency intervention will be launched to provide drinking water and food items to some 8,000 people in Kutaisi. A more detailed evaluation of the situation in the centres in Tbilisi will also be finalised to launch further activities.

“The conflict between Georgia and de-facto republics has led to the displacement of thousands of people over the past couple of years. In addition, 13,000 people have fled their homes over the past few days and still looking for accommodation,” comments Action Against Hunger’s Vincent Stehli.

Action Against Hunger has been present in the Caucasus since 1995, providing assistance through the implementation of water and sanitation, and food security programmes and helping some 60,000 people. In Zugdidi and Abkhazia, the organisation is implementing programmes to support communities and farmers affected by the conflict.