IOM and ECHO visit Afar Region lifesaving and recovery assistances

IOM, through funding support from the European Commission's Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection department ECHO, has been responding to complex emergency situations since 2010 in various regions of Ethiopia assisting disaster affected and displaced communities. Activities include live-saving and recovery assistances, such as provision of Emergency Shelter and Non-food Items (ES/NFI), transitional shelters, livelihoods, gender and HIV awareness activities, capacity building and information management activities.

In this fifth round implementation (January to December 2015) IOM aims to deliver four major results namely; coordinated and timely provision of life-saving ES/NFI kits, improving the capacity of local Government and humanitarian partners on GBV prevention, response and referral mechanisms, internal displacement monitoring in various regions of Ethiopia and engaging public/private actors for remedial action for development-induced displacements.

To observe project implementation progress a monitoring mission that included the ECHO-Addis Ababa field Officer, IOMs EPC OiC and Project development and Liaison Officer visited Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Amibara Woreda of Afar Region of Ethiopia

 

The monitoring team met Amibara Woreda Officials, including the Woreda Administrator, Head of Pastoralist Development Office, Head of Disaster Prevention and Preparedness Coordination  Policy  Office Representative who presented the humanitarian situation of the area following the flood disaster in October 2014.

Due to high rainfall in highland areas and increased level of Awash River, the outflow of water broke multiple dykes that were intended to protect the villages. As a result, multiple villages experienced flooding overnight and washed away crops, destroyed houses and household items, service facilities and displaced over 30, 000 individuals. Emergency response was facilitated by different agencies, including Disaster Risk Management and Food Security Sector, IOM, IRC and Goal Ethiopia. However, chronic needs of WASH, nutrition and Health remain due to the magnitude of the damages the flooding has caused and the effects of droughts following the flooding.

Appreciating the level of coordination and cooperation between IOM and the Government at woreda level, Mr Golubovic the ECHO delegate, informed participants that ECHO has strong partnership with humanitarian agencies such as IOM in Ethiopia, but also globally. ECHO will continue its partnership and encouraged IOM to continue its close work with communities and local authorities to be able to identify and analyze needs at grassroots level and inform partners on humanitarian situations. 

The communities appreciated the assistance received particularly the ES/NFI and they found the items helpful in their day to day activities trying to recover from the shock.

ECHO as well encouraged further discussions on mitigation of natural disasters in close partnership with GoE and humanitarian partners while engaging various donors.