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TV chef Donal Skehan shares heartbreak over cyclone devastation in Malawi

Award-winning food writer and television presenter Donal Skehan has shared his heartbreak at witnessing the devastation caused in Malawi by Cyclone Idai.

One of the world's poorest countries

The TV chef travelled to Malawi with Irish humanitarian aid agency Concern Worldwide in 2016, visiting several communities to learn about their struggle with malnutrition.

With a population of almost 19 million, Malawi is one of the poorest countries in the world and was dealt a further blow when Cyclone Idai struck in early March.

More than 868,900 people have been impacted by the heavy rains and floods, with over 60 deaths and 672 injuries reported.

As the majority of those living in Malawi rely on agriculture for their livelihoods, it is expected that damage to fields and recently planted crops will have a massive impact in the coming months.

Food writer, photographer and TV presenter Donal Skehan with 'lead mothers' who are trained by Concern Wolrdwide on nutrition and teach women in the Kachere Care Group about how to make a nutritious meal for their families with five major food groups. Location: Kaigwanga Village, Mchinji, Malawi. Photo: Jennifer Nolan / Concern Worldwide.
Donal Skehan visiting communities in Malawi that are supported by Concern. Photo: Jennifer Nolan / Concern Worldwide.

Left heartbroken

Skehan said that he was left “heartbroken” by recent coverage of the natural disaster and appealed for help for those left in crisis.

“I was lucky enough to spend some time with communities in Malawi during my visit with Concern Worldwide and saw first-hand the struggles that these people face every day. They survived by growing their own crops and rearing their own animals. Sadly, the region has been devastated in recent weeks by Cyclone Idai, with families seeing their livelihoods being washed away before their eyes.

“As a new dad, it’s impossible to imagine being in a position where you cannot feed your child so I would ask people to please consider donating to Concern now and helping to save lives in Malawi.”

Our work in Malawi

Concern is currently on the ground in Malawi, providing food and emergency kits to those who have been worst hit by Cyclone Idai. In addition, the charity is distributing seeds so that communities can plant crops for the next harvest.

To donate to Concern’s Cyclone Idai emergency response please call 1850 410 510.

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