Amid the storm, dignity and resilience

19 March 2018
In the aftermath of Cyclone Gita in Tonga, women and girls receive UNFPA humanitarian supplies. Image: UNFPA Pacific/Tomoko Kurokawa

When Cyclone Gita slammed into Tonga and other islands in the Pacific in February 2018, entire communities were devastated by one of the strongest storms to have struck the area in decades.

The United Nations Population Fund, UNFPA, was quick to respond to the needs of women and girls affected by the disaster, with crucial support from the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, through prepositioned supplies stored at the DFAT warehouse in Brisbane, and in partnership with the government of Tonga and civil society organisations on the ground.

Here are some of the images of resilience and fortitude amid formidable challenges in post-cyclone Tonga, as captured by colleagues from UNFPA's Pacific Sub-Regional Office which is based in Fiji.

Clinical staff at Vaiola Hospital in the Tongan capital Nuku'Alofa examine UNFPA Dignity Kits intended for women and girls affected by Cyclone Gita (Image: UNFPA Pacific/Tomoko Kurokawa)


A woman affected by Cyclone Gita in 'Eua, Tonga, receives a UNFPA Dignity Kit (Image: UNFPA Pacific/Tomoko Kurokawa)


The partnership between Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and UNFPA is critical in getting lifesaving supplies to women and girls impacted by disaster and conflict across Asia-Pacific (Image: Australia DFAT/James Deane)


The rapid deployment of critical supplies, including clean delivery kits and Dignity Kits, for women and girls is a cornerstone of UNFPA's humanitarian response in Asia-Pacific and globally, including in the aftermath of Cyclone Gita in Tonga (Image: Australia DFAT/James Deane)


At UNFPA, whatever the circumstances, we work to ensure that every pregnancy is wanted, every childbirth is safe and every young person's potential is fulfilled - thus helping fulfil our Three Transformational Results: Zero maternal deaths, zero unmet need for family planning and zero gender-based violence.  This holds true in our humanitarian response to Cyclone Gita in Tonga and other areas of the Pacific.  A baby born safely at Vaiola Hospital in Nuku'Alofa symbolizes our pledge. (Image: UNFPA Pacific)

For more on UNFPA's humanitarian response, including our partnership with Australia DFAT, please contact Roy Wadia, UNFPA Asia-Pacific: / +66 2 687 0111