On the 16th of March 2019, Tropical Cyclone Idai hit the eastern part of Zimbabwe with heavy rains and strong winds.
The storm caused high winds and heavy precipitation in the Chimanimani and Chipinge districts causing riverine and flash flooding which left hundreds lost and injured, over hundreds of people lost their lives, and wide-scale destruction of livelihoods and properties were recorded.
More than 16,000 households were in need of shelter assistance in Chimanimani which recorded the highest number of deaths, over 29,000 families were displaced, more than 95% of the road networks in the affected areas were damaged. Problems associated with displacement and exposure to extreme weather conditions was noted as well as a higher risk of malnutrition and water-borne diseases.
On the 11th of April, the team of medical personnel from the VMC Zimbabwe chapter as part of the Chris Oyakhilome Foundation International delegation, arrived at Copa town in Chimanimani with its resident the population of 130,000 people, and on arrival they provided medical aid to more than 950 people as they carried out medical examinations, delivered health education talks to 500 beneficiaries and provided psychosocial counseling to 35 people who were severely traumatized. The volunteers also assisted in the distribution of relief supplies to over 500 families present at the temporary site.