IFRC and USAID to strengthen resilience of South Caucasus communities to health emergencies

Tbilisi, 30 October 2019 – The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), together with USAID and the Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA), today announced the start of a joint programme, “Strengthening resilience of local communities of South Caucasus to health emergencies”.

The newly launched programme will assist the most vulnerable communities in disaster-prone areas of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia in managing health risks and effects of emergencies and disasters.

Volunteers and staff of the Armenian Red Cross Society, the Azerbaijan Red Crescent Society and the Georgia Red Cross Society, as well as local authorities, will also be able to enhance their knowledge on the response to health-related consequences of disasters and crises.

“Local people are often the first to respond when a disaster or disease outbreak strikes. That is why helping communities and Red Cross Red Crescent Societies to learn how to act in health emergencies is extremely important,” said Olga Dzhumaeva, Head of the IFRC office for South Caucasus.

Azerbaijan, Armenia and Georgia are particularly prone to natural hazards, including earthquakes, floods, landslides, and man-made emergencies such as industrial disasters and transport accidents. “Collaboration with IFRC/Red Cross Red Crescent will help national authorities and local communities build the capacity to prevent and respond to future health emergencies, putting local health systems on stronger long-term footing,” said USAID/Georgia Deputy Mission Director David Hoffman.

During the one-year project, local communities, as well as volunteers and staff from Red Cross Red Crescent societies, will be trained in pandemic preparedness, epidemic control, water hygiene and sanitation, response to mass-casualty events, first aid and psychosocial support.

Media contacts

In Moscow: Ayuna Batoeva, Communications Officer, IFRC, +7 916 040 19 72, ayuna.batoeva@ifrc.org

In Tbilisi: IFRC: Olga Dzhumaeva, Head of IFRC Delegation for South Caucasus, +995 591 703 273, olga.dzhumaeva@ifrc.org

USAID/Georgia: Joseph Larsen, Senior Development Outreach Coordinator, +995 599 589 206, jlarsen@usaid.gov