Natural and weather related disasters are increasing in frequency. The countries in Central and South America and the Caribbean remain vulnerable to the impact of these natural and man-made disasters.
In 2006 and 2007, the Pan American Disaster Response Unit (PADRU) provided operational, logistics and preparedness support to the region's National Societies in response to 33 emergencies, in an effective and efficient manner according to the needs. A total of CHF 2,469,989 was allocated through the Federation's Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) to support operations in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, El Salvador, Suriname and Uruguay. Nine emergency appeals were launched for CHF 19,948,742 in response to the flood-related emergency in Bolivia, Haiti, Mexico and Suriname, Hurricane Dean and Tropical storm Noel in the Caribbean, Hurricane Felix in Central America and Mexico, the volcanic eruption in Ecuador and the earthquake in Peru. In the context of these operations 54 deployments of PADRU Disaster Management delegates/staff took place and 44 Regional Intervention Team (RIT) members were deployed.
In addition to disaster response support to National Societies, PADRU supported disaster preparedness for response by organizing and facilitating 11 RIT trainings and 33 RIT internships in the last two years.
Better- coordinated regional collaboration allowed for an increase in availability of pre-positioned stock, pre-disaster agreements and the organization of several disaster preparedness meetings - such as the pre-hurricane and shelter meetings.
During recent years PADRU has developed systems and deployed resources, both in response to emergencies and in support to capacity building initiatives in disaster preparedness for response. It has also ensured overall coordination of disaster response - both within the Movement and with non- Movement agencies - assisted in the development of disaster response policies, ensured adherence to international standards for disaster relief operations, and built and sustained operational links with key strategic partners.
Through the capacities described above, PADRU ensured continuity to disaster response in the Americas, thereby enabling the Regional Representations, other Federation offices and National Societies to focus on their regional and local longer term programmes even in times of disaster.
Overall Programme Goal: Red Cross National Societies in the Americas are receiving significant benefits through support, services, coordination, resources and training from an efficient and effective disaster management unit that contributes to increasing the capacity to successfully help people reduce risk, respond to and recover from disasters, thus alleviating human suffering.
Needs: Total 2006-2007 budget: CHF 4,778,190 (USD 4,273,873 or EUR 2,895,873); out of which 70% is covered.
No. of people we help: A total of 649,313 persons (127,630 families) were assisted through Red Cross disaster response operations supported by PADRU during 2006 and 2007. When not responding to disasters, PADRU contributes to the strengthening of local and regional disaster response capacity of National Societies while continuously increasing the overall quality of existing tools, mechanisms and procedures. Due to the emergency related character of the services of PADRU, estimations on the quantity of people in the future who will benefit from activities of PADRU are not possible. Through the Regional Logistics Unit (RLU), PADRU currently has a preparedness stock level to assist 125,000 persons.
Our partners: PADRU closely coordinates with governmental and/or non-governmental organizations present at the place of the emergency during relief operations and in preparation activities such as coordination meetings and trainings. Coordination takes place with organizations such as United Nations (UN) agencies, Ericsson Response, Oxfam, Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), Partner and Operating National Societies and other humanitarian organizations. Furthermore, through regular participation in regional and international coordination meetings with international agencies, useful information, best practices and available resources are shared in order to reduce duplication of efforts and ensure effective operational inter-agency coordination during disasters.
How we work
All International Federation assistance seeks to adhere to the Code of Conduct and is committed to the Humanitarian Charter and Minimum Standards in Disaster Response (Sphere) in delivering quality and accountable assistance to the most vulnerable. For support to or for further information concerning Federation programmes or operations in this or other countries, or for a full description of the national society profile, please access the Federation's website at http://www.ifrc.org
The International Federation's activities are aligned with its Global Agenda, which sets out four broad goals to meet the Federation's mission to "improve the lives of vulnerable people by mobilizing the power of humanity".
Global Agenda Goals:
- Reduce the numbers of deaths, injuries and impact from disasters.
- Reduce the number of deaths, illnesses and impact from diseases and public health emergencies.
- Increase local community, civil society and Red Cross Red Crescent capacity to address the most urgent situations of vulnerability.
- Reduce intolerance, discrimination and social exclusion and promote respect for diversity and human dignity.
For further information on this Appeal, contact:
In Panama: Dario Alvarez, Acting Head, Pan American Disaster Response Unit; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; phone (507) 316 1001; Fax (507) 316 1082.
In Panama: Maria Alcazar, Resource Mobilization Coordinator, Americas Zone, email: email@example.com; phone: +(507) 380 0250; Fax: (507) 317 1304