There are five nations within the East Asia region: Mongolia, China, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), the Republic of Korea (RoK) and Japan. The region is at high risk for a wide range of disasters and health emergencies, accounting for more than 63 percent of Asia's reported disaster casualties (mostly due to the massive floods in China) and 64 percent of Asia's disaster related economic losses in 2007. Considering East Asia accounted for only 22 percent of Asia's reported disasters in 2007, the statistics demonstrate that the impact on populations and their well-being is comparatively higher in East Asia.
One reason for this is that poverty is still prominent in the region, with many populations left vulnerable to recurring disasters and the spread of disease. Migrant urban populations from impoverished or disaster stricken rural areas further complicate the social and economic structure of the countries, and make disaster relief or health promotion efforts of the humanitarian organizations, such as the Red Cross increasingly challenging.
As auxiliaries to their governments, especially in times of disaster response, each of the East Asia national societies provides needs-based services that centre on the four Global Agenda Goals, which contribute towards meeting the Millennium Development Goals as agreed upon by each of these nations. The International Federation has been active in supporting the Red Cross Societies in the East Asia region for many years, with a regional office located in Beijing since 1999.
The overall purpose of this 2009-10 plan is to coordinate and support International Federation efforts at country and regional level to assist the national societies of the region to scale up their work in line with the Global Agenda. The East Asia regional office will continue to evolve its role as a part of the new secretariat zonal structure and operating model. This model has been designed in order to create a more unified approach to Federation support to national societies across the whole of Asia Pacific. In line with the zonal strategy, the work of the regional office in 2009-10 will take the following directions:
- Strategic guidance and management of the country-level Federation offices in DPRK and Mongolia;
- Provision of technical support to national societies as required, in particular China, DPRK and Mongolia;
- Developing institutional memory, promoting regional networking and ensuring sharing of lessons learnt;
- Developing a more pro-active approach to Movement coordination, including specific relationship management responsibility with partner national societies.
This plan aims to support the national societies' programmes in the areas of disaster management, health and care, the promotion of humanitarian values with cross-cutting opportunities for organizational development and capacity building. This will be achieved through a balance of programme and technical support, as well as advocacy, coordination and international representation. The total budget for 2009 is CHF 1,335,027 (USD 1,220,317 million or EUR 850,335) and for 2010 is CHF 1,316,845 (USD 1,203,697 million or EUR 838,755).