Kyrgyzstan: Revised Plan 2011 No. MAAKG00111
Following independence, Kyrgyzstan embarked on a transition to a democratic system of governance and market economy. The socalled Tulip Revolution of 2005 brought a new leadership, but frequent public demonstrations and equally frequent changes of state officials contributed towards concerns over stability. Violent unrest in early April 2010 ousted the president and an interim government comprising former opposition figures is currently in power. Internal violence in the spring flared up again in June and caused a massive population movement in Osh and Jalalabad provinces. The provisional administration held a referendum on a new constitution restoring powers to parliament in June and parliamentary elections in October 2010 and intends to hold a presidential election in December 2011.
Poverty levels in Kyrgyzstan significantly exceed those in many developed and developing countries. Besides, in 2008 the country was hit hard by high food and fuel prices globally and throughout the central Asian region. Kyrgyzstan, whose natural energy resources are scarce, has also had difficulties in ensuring a stable power supply to the population in the last years, especially in the cold winter period. The worsening global economic situation, together with domestic power problems, saw businesses closing down in 2009, with construction and real estate hardest hit. The widespread instability in April-June 2010 had a severe impact on the economy, with much of the retail sector suffering from looting and remaining hampered by the closure of the Uzbek and Kazakh borders. There exist regional and urban/ rural disparities as well as inequalities between men and women. The uneven economic development creates the conditions for heightened migration as people move to more prosperous areas within the country and beyond. The growth of its external and internal migration has been a cause of concern in Kyrgyzstan. In 2009 people faced with increasing competition for existing jobs from migrant workers who started to return from Russia and Kazakhstan owing to the decline in construction activity in those countries.
The population is carrying an increasing burden of ill health associated with poverty, with a rise in the prevalence of diseases such as Tuberculosis (TB). Inadequate water supply and poor sanitary literacy among people are some of the reasons for high intestinal infection rates, particularly among children. The number of HIV cases is growing. While injecting drug use is still the main source of infection, the number of sexual transmissions is increasing. The fear of stigma and discrimination towards people with HIV and TB is a major cause of the hesitant take-up of essential support services and treatment, even where these are free. Achieving a safe blood supply is also an issue in the country, not least because of the lack of technology and means to recruit voluntary, unpaid donors.
Kyrgyzstan is highly prone to disasters and the direct economic damage caused by natural disasters is rated at millions of US dollars in a normal year. The country also faces the disastrous consequences of being home to large quantities of uranium waste requiring the maintenance of safe tailing sites. The Kyrgyzstan Red Crescent is the longest established humanitarian organization in the country providing needs based services to the most vulnerable communities. Acting as an auxiliary to the public authorities in the humanitarian field, the National Society has been making a difference to people's lives through preventive campaigns and support in health and care, social assistance, disaster risk mitigation and response operations, tracing services, international humanitarian law dissemination and the promotion of humanitarian values to tackle discrimination, intolerance and violence in communities.
Working towards the overall goal to carry out effectively the social and humanitarian activities for the benefit of the vulnerable groups of the population - as stated in the strategic development plan - the National Society programming in the coming two years will address the vulnerabilities arising from existing health risks, disasters, inequalities, migration and stigma and discriminative attitudes. The Kyrgyzstan Red Crescent partners include the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), teh UN country team, the American, British, German and Netherlands Red Cross Societies, the Turkish Red Crescent Society, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.
Kyrgyzstan is one of the pilot countries rolling out the operational alliance (OA) concept. The purpose of the alliance is to most effectively utilize the collective resources of the Movement and other partners to enhance the capacity of the operating National Society to achieve greater impact in its work with vulnerable communities. The alliance in Kyrgyzstan is developing and the National Society is in the driving seat.
Following the October 2008 partnership meeting, the National Society capacity-building initiatives were systematized presenting the overall performance improvement as a combination of two interlinked processes: internal, i.e. the move towards the community-based integrated programming and building relevant management capacities, and external, i.e. the move towards effective cooperation with partners through the OA.
The logical framework matrix, work plan and budget for the transition period until the end of 2010, developed by the National Society working group with support from the International Federation's consultant, were presented at the partnership meeting in Bishkek in April 2009. Partners that participated in the meeting - the ICRC, the International Federation secretariat, the British, Finnish, German, Netherlands, and Swedish Red Cross Societies - expressed their overall support to the change process.
During a side-meeting initiated by the Kyrgyzstan RC at the Federation General Assembly in Nairobi in November 2009 to discuss the operational alliance the following key points were agreed:
- Partner National Societies are prepared to support and resource an in-country delegate.
- The Seven Ones model is still the central one, but needs to be lighter, more flexible and less process-oriented.
- The role of the Federation secretariat in the alliance needs clarification through the plan agreed among the partners.
- The British Red Cross will act as a focal point in keeping the initiative moving forward. Meanwhile, the International Federation further coordinates the change process through the country representative for Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, who has been the operational alliance focal point in the region.
At its General Assembly in 2009, the International Federation adopted Strategy 2020 to guide its work and that of National Societies both domestically and globally. Focussing on "saving lives and changing minds", S2020 and calls on national societies, as effective auxiliaries to the public authorities in the humanitarian field, to provide high quality services within the core mandates of the Red Cross and Red Crescent, to influence behaviours, promote changes in attitudes and mindsets, and for the Red Cross and Red Crescent to play a lead role in advocating for meeting the humanitarian needs of vulnerable people and communities. In March 2010 the Kyrgyzstan Red Crescent adopted the new strategy 2010- 2018, which is alighned with the S2020. The Red Crescent developed the strategy using participatory approach and involving staff, volunteers and beneficiaries in the formulation of its strategic aims.
The International Federation secretariat's key areas of support to the Kyrgystan Red Crescent in 2010- 2011 will include health and care, disaster management, a dissemination of principles and values and National Society capacity-building. This is in line with the Strategic Aims to save lives, protect livelihoods, and strengthen recovery from disaster and crises; enable healthy and safe living; promote social inclusion and a culture of non-violence and peace and the enabling actions to deliver the aims.
The main outcomes to be achieved will be:
- reduced vulnerability of communities in disaster-prone areas of the country (community preparedness and risk reduction);
- strengthened capacity of the National Society in disaster preparedness and response (including planning and recovery);
- reduced vulnerability of communities to HIV and Tuberculosis and their impact, as well as to most common diseases and trauma;
- enhanced ability of communities to oppose discrimination, intolerance and violence (including sexual and gender-based) and to promote respect for diversity;
- increased National Society capacity in programme development and management; effective support by governance and management to the programming; and improved volunteer capacity;
- the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement's Fundamental Principles and humanitarian values are promoted and integrated into Red Crescent operational programmes.
In 2007, the Kyrgyzstan Red Crescent joined the Red Cross Red Crescent Global Alliance on HIV to scale up the national HIV programming to reduce the vulnerability to, and impact of, HIV. The country programme was launched in December 2008 and aims to scale up and improve the quality of HIV services and outreach. Target beneficiaries directly benefiting from the programmes will be people most vulnerable to illnesses, including key populations at a higher risk of HIV, stigma, discrimination and violence; to risks related to disasters and migration; Red Crescent volunteers and the general public. The consolidated budget for the revised 2011 plan is CHF 1.2 million (USD 1.2 million or EUR 0.9 million).