By Nwakpa O. Nwakpa, Nigerian Red Cross Society

Dinda lost two of his 11 children to the armed conflict in 2013 when their home in Madagali, in the north-eastern Nigerian state of Adamawa, was attacked. He fled through the bush with his family. Unable to return home, they started a new life as internally displaced people in the district of Song.

“I lost two children, a 19-year-old who died in a bomb blast, and our nine-year-old, who is still missing because of the armed conflict,” he said.

Dinda, 65, his wife and their surviving children are now among more than 18,600 vulnerable people receiving urgent support from the Nigerian Red Cross Society. The family’s troubles are not yet over, but now they have hope – thanks to a cash transfer that will help Dinda to rebuild his livelihood.

“This is the first time I have received assistance for years; there has been no help for me and my family until now,” he said.

Long-term ambitions

The Nigerian Red Cross, in partnership with the IFRC, will support 300,000 conflict-affected people in 50,000 households with cash, health information, and relief items including shelter kits, buckets, mosquito nets and water purification tablets.

The two-year operation is focused on supporting food security and livelihoods through cash transfer programming, shelter, health services, and disaster risk reduction, to enable displaced families to become independent once more.

The projectis funded through an appeal launched by the ICRC to assist a total of 80,000 people this year, with the aim of supporting a further 220,000 people in 2018.