Afghanistan: Floods - Operation Update Report n° 1, DREF Operation n° MDRAF008


Summary of major revisions made to emergency plan of action:

Due to the evolution of events from 15 August onward, whence governance of the country effectively changed hands, the remaining planned interventions would have the following key revisions:

  • Unconditional cash grants are replaced by in-kind distributions. With the continued devaluation of the Afghani currency and lack of cash or banking services in general, the modality of cash assistance will be replaced by in-kind distributions instead. This will remain as the modus operandi until the situation stabilizes.

  • Procurement lead. Formerly led by the ARCS and supported by the IFRC, due to the challenges in-country, procurement matters would be led and coordinated by the IFRC instead.

  • Extension of DREF operation. With the access to funds by ARCS gradually being restored, the resumption of activities will resume soon. Therefore, factoring in terrain access challenges due to weather, the timeframe of this operation will be extended by two months at no additional costs.


Description of the disaster

Since the commencement of the DREF operation and with the worsening weather, ANDMA had updated1 on 12 May 2021 that the tally had increased to at least 84 deaths, 32 people missing, 2,600 residential homes partially or totally destroyed, 3,600 animals perished, and more than 2,023 hectares of farmland ravaged across 17 provinces of Afghanistan. These conditions led to blocked roads and key supply lines in many provinces and hampering rescue efforts, mandating the need for heavy machinery to restore access.

The various affected provinces have also experienced internal displacements due to conflicts, and temporary cessation of health services during prolonged fighting between the then Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) and non-state armed groups (NSAG). According to the Weekly Humanitarian Update2 published by UN OCHA on 30 May 2021, the accumulated number of people affected by natural disasters numbered 22,624, with 115,825 people verified displaced by conflict. In addition to humanitarian assistance rendered to displaced persons and people affected by conflict, UN OCHA had also identified and assisted the following flood-affected populations with food, cash, relief items, emergency shelter and hygiene kits, and restoration of water sources:

  • 1,561 people affected by floods in Badakhshan and Takar provinces;

  • 7,896 people affected by floods in Herat and Badghis provinces; and - 868 people affected by natural disasters in Bamyan and Daykundi provinces.

Provincial disaster management committees had been spearheading the coordination in terms of assigning teams to carry out the assessments and the response. Specifically for the six provinces targeted for this DREF, the findings were as follows: (see table on p.3)

While ARCS has been actively involved in the flood response operations together in coordination with various governmental and humanitarian actors and had conducted various aid distribution activities and training for ARCS, the events of 15 August 2021 when the Taliban effectively took over control of Afghanistan led to the suspension of further activities since. These were due in large part to the cessation of banking services and persistent difficulties in accessing cash for the implementation of activities. Nevertheless, these issues are being systematically resolved and activities are expected to resume soon.