By Andrey Sidorin, IFRC

Families whose homes were destroyed when a cargo plane crashed into a Kyrgyz village are beginning to rebuild their lives, one month on.

At least 39 people died and 18 more were injured when the Boeing 747 aircraft crashed on a village in Dacha-SU district, close to Manas International Airport near the country’s capital Bishkek.

The plane was on route from Hong Kong to Istanbul on 16 January and was scheduled to refuel in Kyrgyzstan when the crash happened. Nineteen houses were destroyed and seven were severely damaged.

Kyrgyzstan Red Crescent teams were on the ground in the aftermath, providing emergency supplies including clothes, blankets and food to survivors and families whose homes had been damaged. Volunteers also provided psychosocial support to people whose family members were killed or injured.

Azamat Baialinov, President of the Red Crescent of Kyrgyzstan, said: “The same day as the crash, we launched a fundraising appeal for those who had lost everything.

“We wanted to make sure they had support beyond emergency supplies. The response from the public and from the private sector was incredible.”

The Red Crescent teamed up with international Demir Bank, public fund Pomogat Legko and the American Chamber of Commerce in Kyrgyzstan to collect cash for the victims, raising more than 73,000 Swiss francs.

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An ambitious cash transfer programme provided direct support to those affected by the disaster.

“We hope this financial support will go some way to supporting the survivors as they start a difficult road to recovery,” Baialinov said.

The funds were distributed to the 18 people injured in the crash, families that had lost a loved one, six children who had lost one or both parents and families whose homes had been completely destroyed.