Bhutan + 8 more

CERF Newsletter Nov 2009


CERF Advisory Group meets to discuss Fund management and operations

On 2 and 3 November, the CERF Advisory Group met in New York. During the meeting, the Advisory Group received a brief from the Emergency Relief Coordinator on the use of the Fund in 2009. The Advisory Group expressed a high level of support for the use and management of the Fund.

Other issues discussed included the Performance and Accountability Framework, CERF's life-saving criteria, plans for finalizing a revision of the Secretary-General's Bulletin on CERF and the review of the grant window for underfunded emergencies.

A full note of the conclusions and recommendations of the meeting will be available on the CERF website in the coming weeks.

CERF High-Level Conference set for 8 - 9 December

The High-Level Conference on CERF will be held on 8 and 9 December 2009 at the ECOSOC Chamber in New York. The event is CERF's primary venue for fundraising and will be convened by the Secretary-General. Invitations have been sent to all Member States as well as to representatives from the private sector and non-governmental organizations.

The meeting will open with a briefing by Under-Secretary-General John Holmes and other UN representatives on 8 December. This substantive session will be followed by questions and answers, which will provide an opportunity for dialogue with meeting participants. This will be followed by a reception co-hosted by Norway and Qatar.

A ceremonial session will be held on 9 December, which will include the premier of a documentary film on relief operations funded by CERF and statements from the Secretary-General and other guests of honour.

A pledging session will follow, where Member States and private sector participants will announce their pledges to the Fund for 2010. It is hoped that the event will generate enough support to put CERF close to its $450 million annual funding target.

Country allocations and highlights for October 2009

In October, CERF provided nearly $74 million to relief agencies for emergency assistance, over $38 million of which went through the rapid response window to Bhutan, Burkina Faso, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Mauritania, Niger, Philippines, Sri Lanka, and Sudan.

Asia and the Pacific

In response to the recent series of natural disasters in Asia, CERF allocated some $6.1 million to UN agencies in Indonesia as they support the Government response to humanitarian needs caused by the recent earthquake in Sumatra.

The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) will receive $360,000 to address the immediate health needs of 1,600 pregnant women. Some 250,000 people will benefit from the largest portion of the allocation ($2.5 million), which has gone to the World Food Programme (WFP) to support food and logistics operations. The remainder of the funds will enable activities including helping farmers to plant essential crops through an allocation to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO); supporting children to go back to school through projects by the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF); providing clean water and sanitation facilities by UNICEF and the International Organization for Migration (IOM); and helping authorities to remove debris left behind by the earthquake supported by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

A further $6.8 million from CERF is helping UN agencies to assist an estimated one million people severely affected by the flooding in the Philippines.

In Bhutan, CERF has allocated $460,000 to UNDP to provide 800 tents to earthquake-affected populations. These temporary shelters will provide housing for 600 families and allow schools and hospitals to resume operations.

Finally, $3.8 million has gone to boost UN efforts to respond to humanitarian needs created by Typhoon Ketsana in Lao PDR. Programmes seek to meet urgent needs in the health, shelter, and water and sanitation sectors.

Burkina Faso

CERF made an allocation of nearly $5 million in response to the torrential rains that fell in September on the capital city of Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. Approximately 150,000 people are currently affected, including nearly 90,000 displaced. It is estimated to date that approximately 25,000 houses and 250-300 hectares of cultivated land are destroyed in peri-urban areas of the city.

Clay-built houses and temporary dwellings have been completely destroyed. Temporary shelters are dangerously untenable, with overcrowding, and little or no access to food, water, latrines, sanitation facilities or soap.

WFP will use nearly $1.5 million to provide full food rations to the IDPs, assist those living in host families and provide logistics support for the distribution of non-food items. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) will use $627,555 to purchase and distribute tents.

UNICEF will receive over $2 million to promote preventive measures against communicable diseases for 150,000 displaced persons and ensure that displaced persons, especially children and women, have access to basic curative care. UNICEF will also work to avoid a deterioration of the nutritional status of 25,000 children, acquire 100 tents for temporary classrooms and provide school supplies for 15,000 children. Finally, UNICEF will ensure a more predictable, timely and effective hygiene response across 34 camps.

The World Health Organization (WHO) will use nearly $1.5 million to restore essential basic health care services; support critical referral services; and strengthen the surveillance and response to water-borne disease outbreaks. UNFPA will receive $216,615 to help strengthen reproductive health services, prevent sexual violence and provide hygiene supplies.


UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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