Southern Africa Region: Development Operational Plan 2014

1. Executive Summary

Southern Africa presents unique humanitarian challenges. It has growing, increasingly inter-connected economies and yet large parts of its population are food insecure. Hundreds of thousands of its most vulnerable communities continue to have their lives and livelihoods destroyed by annual floods. The size of the humanitarian industry is receding due to the cessation of conflicts and reduced profile of the HIV epidemic, yet the vulnerability caused by drought, flooding and epidemics is not being adequately addressed through domestic institutions.

National Red Cross Societies have a crucial and special role in this context. As auxiliaries to the state, they have a permanent mandate to support their governments in dealing with humanitarian challenges. As coordinators of national networks of volunteers they have access to the most vulnerable communities.