Relief Bulletin: Weekly Humanitarian Highlights in Ethiopia 25 Jun 2007

Report
from UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Published on 25 Jun 2007
FLOOD ALERT

Rainfall reports combined with elevated ground saturation and high water levels in the country's rivers and dams indicate that flood prone areas are at increased risk of flooding in the coming months. Flooding has already been reported from South Omo and Bale zones. This is much earlier than last year, when flooding began in August. In preparation the DPPA-led Flood Taskforce of the Early Warning Working Group is currently working on contingency planning with assistance from relevant cluster leads. At grassroots levels, community initiatives have already been successful in preventing some of the worst impacts of last year. In Dire Dawa, a community forum between the Dire Dawa and East Hararghe zone administrations has established a modality to alert communities at risk of flash flooding when heavy rainfalls are received in the East Hararghe highlands. This community driven early warning mechanism was successful in preventing loss of life when the town experienced flash floods in May. For more information contact: ocha-eth@un.org

SERIOUS MALNUTRITION IN CHIFRA WOREDA, ZONE 1, AFAR REGION

Save the Children UK conducted a standard nutritional survey in Chifra woreda, zone 1, following reports of poor food security due to the failure of the sugum rains. The findings of the survey indicate that the malnutrition status in the woreda is serious with 11.1 percent Global Acute Malnutrition (GAM). Low prevalence of Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM), however, was also estimated by the survey. After reviewing the anthropometric results and the presence of various aggravating factors, ENCU reported that the SAM could have been underestimated. Aggravating factors include - lack of pasture and water availability for human and livestock consumption, unusual livestock migration, absence of milk production for children, low EPI and Vitamin A supplementation and high school dropout rates. Considering all these factors, ENCU recommends the immediate establishment of a Therapeutic Feeding Programme in Stabilization Centers and an Outpatient Therapeutic Programme. In addition, the survey recommends timely safety net resource allocation and distribution. For more information contact: isaackm@dppc.gov.et

TSF PIPELINE SHORTAGE

The Targeted Supplementary Feeding (TSF) Programme in Support of the Enhanced Outreach Strategy (EOS) for Child Survival in Ethiopia is experiencing programme implementation challenges due to immediate pipeline shortages and revised screening schedules in some regions. Furthermore, dispatches that were planned to take place in May were postponed to June. Solutions to this problem are being identified on a case by case basis through regional coordination meetings with the EOS/TSF partners. Meanwhile, screening results released this week show a higher than expected number of malnourished children and pregnant and nursing women in some regions. The screening, however, took place during a time in which people traditionally face food shortages. The situation has further stretched WFP's pipeline and has negatively affected the overall yearly estimations for the TSF pipeline. While the yearly requirements are being revised and in order to address the immediate needs for supplementary food rations, solutions are currently being identified locally. Meanwhile, a total of 2,906 tonnes of CSB was borrowed from DPPA last week and WFP Headquarters has granted a cash advance for local procurement of 13,500 tonnes of famix. Contact: wfp.addisababa@wfp.org

AWD UPDATE

During the week, WHO reported a slight increase in the number of Acute Watery Diarrhoea (AWD) cases due to the onset of the rains. In addition, four woredas in Oromiya Region have been newly affected - Sire and Jaju woredas of Arsi zone, Sinana woreda of Bale zone and Anchar woreda of West Hararghe zone. WHO has funded the relocation of health workers from SNNPR and other parts of Oromiya to help contain cases in the newly affected areas. Training on case management, surveillance and reporting for health workers is also ongoing. At the beginning of June, WHO and the Federal Ministry of Health (FMoH) organized a three-day training in Dire Dawa on emergency preparedness and response with 24 participants from six Regional Health Bureaus. These participants will now act as a rapid response team. For more information contact: who-wro@et.afro.who.int

GAMBELLA UPDATE

A community led initiative peace dialogue between the Lou and Jikany Nuer began in Akobo County, South Sudan last week. The dialogue is facilitated by PACT Sudan and UNOCHA PCI and is the first in a series of meetings that will discuss long term peace and stability. Both communities are in need of food and non-food humanitarian assistance. Ongoing rains could also amplify cases of AWD and other water borne diseases. The Humanitarian Response Fund (HRF) Review Board has recommended two four-month project proposals by IOM and ZOA for approval. The projects focus on humanitarian requirements, and include the distribution of NFI's and seed, support for shelter through plastic sheets and tool provision, and water and sanitation interventions. NFI distribution will use existing UNICEF and DPPA stocks, which will be replenished by HRF funds. The IOM project will be implemented in Lare, Jor, Wantua, and Jikaw woredas and target 21,000 people, while ZOA will work in Akobo and Itang woredas and serve 13,700 people. UN-OCHA has drafted an Action Points Matrix detailing agencies' responses to the Jikany Nuer relocation in Gambella region. This has been created as a counterpart to the existing matrix for Southern Sudan in an effort to harmonize response between agencies on both sides of the border. For more information contact: ocha-eth@un.org and info@unocha-pci.org

GOAL TO CONDUCT NUTRITIONAL SURVEY IN DARE LEBU WOREDA, WEST HARARGHE ZONE

GOAL with Oromiya DPPB and the Regional ENCU will conduct a rapid nutritional survey in Dara Lebo woreda, West Hararghe zone from 25 June. The assessment was requested by the Woreda Health Bureau due to concerning results of the EOS screening in Mid-May and deterioration in the food security situation. Preliminary results should be available by mid-July. For more information contact: rrpcoordinator@goalethiopia.com

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