Belarus: Extreme Winter Condition (MDRBY001) DREF Final report
CHF 95,871 was allocated from the IFRC’s Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) to support the Belarus Red Cross Society in delivering assistance to more than 4,000 homeless and other vulnerable people throughout Belarus.
Summary: Due to the sudden onset of extremely cold weather, many Belarusians' livelihoods already hit hard by the financial crisis came under extreme pressure. The severe winter increased the vulnerability of the homeless in particular.
The Belarus Red Cross carried out response activities immediately by addressing the basic needs such as hot meals, warm clothing, and blankets of those mostly affected.
The situation was aggravated by heavy snowfalls and continuation of extremely low temperatures. In this context, the operation responded to the increased needs of beneficiaries by setting up winterized tents with equipment to function as stations in the cities where people can warm up and receive services and relief from the Belarus Red Cross Society. Additional food packages, clothes, winter boots, blankets, and mattresses were also provided for the beneficiaries, especially the homeless.
In order to ensure proper support to the affected people, Belarus Red Cross rescue teams received tools to remove the snow and help trapped vehicles on the roads. Also in order to efficiently assist other vulnerable city inhabitants, Red Cross volunteers working on the streets were provided with big thermos flasks to hand out hot drinks.
Furthermore, in April 2012, the operation enabled Belarus Red Cross to provide 100 food parcels to the people affected by spring floods in Gomel region, as well as to supply basic technical equipment for 20 Red Cross emergency response volunteers and staff, as it was recommended by the “lessons learned” workshop co-facilitated by IFRC in Minsk on 12-13 March 2012.
The operation was successfully completed by end of April 2012 and covered 57 locations. There is a remaining balance of CHF 1,591, which needs to be returned to the DREF funds.
The donors who contributed to the DREF in replenishment of the allocation made for this operation were the following: Austrian Red Cross with CHF 18,114, Icelandic Red Cross with CHF 15,000 and DG ECHO with CHF 47,936.
The major donors and partners of DREF include the Australian, American and Belgian Governments, the Austrian Red Cross, the Canadian Red Cross and the Canadian Government, the Danish Red Cross and the Danish Government, the European Commission Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection (ECHO), the Irish and the Italian Governments, the Japanese Red Cross Society, the Luxembourg Government, the Monaco Red Cross and the Monaco Government, the Netherlands Red Cross and the Netherlands Government, the Norwegian Red Cross and the Norwegian Government, the Spanish Government, the Swedish Red Cross and the Swedish Government, the United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID), the Medtronic and Z Zurich Foundations, and other corporate and private donors. The IFRC, on behalf of the Belarus National Society, would like to extend thanks to all for their generous contributions. Details of all donors can be found on: http://www.ifrc.org/docs/appeals/Active/MAA00010_2012.pdf