Albania: 9,000 children in need following devastating earthquake

Children and families displaced by Tuesday’s earthquake shelter in Durres.

As strong quakes and aftershocks continue in Albania, thousands of children and their families – some of whom saw their homes destroyed in Tuesdays earthquake – need vital support, Save the Children warned today.

At least four children are among the 40 people known to have died and at least 675 people are wounded. Search and rescue missions are continuing and more victims are expected to be found in the rubble.

20,000 people including 9,000 children have been affected by earthquake.*

The ongoing strong quakes have further damaged hospitals and primary healthcare centres, making it even more challenging to deliver medical services to those most in need.

Save the Children is on the ground and working closely with the government to assess the situation in four of the impacted areas – Durres, Tirane, Shijak and Fushe Kruje. We are responding to the most immediate needs of families and children.

Anila Meco, Save the Children country director in Albania, said:

“Children who have already been terrified and confused by the shock of one huge earthquake continue to be exposed again and again to potentially traumatising experiences as the subsequent quakes and aftershocks hit. Many can hardly speak but when they do, they tell me they are very scared and worried that the building they are in is going to collapse. Its cold and raining in Albania. People need tents, beds, blankets and hygiene kits urgently as well as emotional and mental support.”

Spokespeople are available. If you wish to arrange an interview, please contact Davina Hagan in London [email protected] 0044 7732 601762. During out of office hours, please contact [email protected] 0044 7831 650409.

Note to editors:

Photos are available here

  • All figures sourced from the Albanian Ministry of Health and Social Protection and General Directory for Civil Emergencies.

** In Albania, Save the Childrens humanitarian work focuses on reducing the impact of disasters for children and their communities and developing plans of action that ensure effective responses in coordination with other agencies. Save the Childrens team of psychologists is currently working with children in schools that are being used as shelters in areas impacted by the earthquake.

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