Madagascar Grand Sud 2016 - 2017 Humanitarian Strategic Response Plan

SUMMARY

Goals and Strategic Objectives

Goal 1: Save lives

Strategic objective 1. Avoid loss of human lives, especially among children under five and pregnant and lactating women in zones classified as being in "Emergency" (IPC 4) and "Crisis" (IPC3) under the Integrated Phase Classification (IPC).
Strategic objective 2. Improve food security and restore livelihoods of the most vulnerable households in zones classified as in "Emergency" (IPC 4) and "Crisis" (IPC 3).

Goal 2: Prevent deterioration of the humanitarian situation

Strategic objective 3. Provide key health services, including maternal healthcare, to the most vulnerable households and ensure monitoring of diseases requiring medical care in the Grand Sud.
Strategic objective 4. Ensure continuity of social services that will prevent the occurrence of negative coping mechanisms from the population in "Emergency" (IPC 4) and in "Crisis" (IPC 3).

Goal 3: Develop a crisis exit strategy concurrently with the humanitarian response

Strategic objective 5. Implement jointly with development actors a crisis exit strategy as part of the early recovery process and community resilience building.

Parameters of the response

Since March 2016, a joint humanitarian response plan, budgeted at USD 69.9 million has been developed to cover one year, namely from March 2016 to March 2017. The first phase of the response focused on life-saving activities.
Early recovery as well as resilience-building activities have gradually started and will be implemented over the next three years.

Though the humanitarian response plan was funded only at 52% as of August 2016, the overall humanitarian situation tangibly improved in July/August 2016 thanks to a sound use of the funds allocated.
The total number of people in severe food insecurity decreased by 90,000 people and the nutritional status of children under five improved in the five districts and has remained stable over the last two months, except in the district of Tsihombe. Within the communes, the number of pockets reaching the malnutrition emergency thresholds (severe 2% or global >10%) decreased from 32 pockets in February 2016 to 17 pockets in June 2016. Access to surface water has also improved thanks to rainfall and truck-delivered water distribution operations. This has contributed to more stable prices for water. The outcomes would have been much better if the funds requested in the appeals were fully secured.
Despite these achievements, three compounding factors have been persisting.

1) Poor and late rainfall: until April 2016, four districts out of six still recorded rainfall below the average over the last 20 years whereas good rainfall has been recorded since April 2016 in the districts of Ambovombe and Amboasary but came too late to save the crops that should have been harvested in June 2016. (Figure 1. Rainfall from January to July 2016). As a consequence, maize, cassava, and rice production decreased by as much as 95% compared with the levels obtained in 2015.

2) Lack of rainfall in the future: According to weather forecasts, rainfall will be below normal until November 2016 in the Grand Sud and the cyclone season 2016-2017 will be late by one to two months compared with normal years.

3) Expansion of the zones with humanitarian needs: The zone that was initially affected by drought expanded to five communes located in two additional districts, namely Taolagnaro and Toliara II. Due to the lack of targeted response resulting from the lack of funds, a portion of people in moderate food insecurity sank into severe food insecurity. (Figure 2. Change in the number of people in food insecurity).
The IPC conducted from September to October 2016 showed that 845,000 individuals were affected, namely 330,000 being in Emergency (phase 4) and 515,000 in Crisis (phase 3), and that 3 districts out of 8 (Tsihombe, Beloha and Amboasary) are classified as in Emergency (IPC 4).
If humanitarian assistance is not continued, households with undernourished children under five and pregnant or lactating women are the most at risk of increase in mortality and morbidity. It is also very likely that the most affected 850,000 individuals will turn to extreme negative coping strategies during the lean season running from October 2016 to April 2017. In the five districts, 70% of the households reported that the lack of money is the main cause for their very low attendance of health facilities and very poor access to drinking water. Moreover, 31% of the households have removed at least one child from school and 44% encourage their children to beg to survive.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs:

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