The Gambia: Storm DREF Bulletin No. MDRGM004

Situation Report
Originally published


The International Federation's Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) is a source of un-earmarked money created by the Federation in 1985 to ensure that immediate financial support is available for Red Cross and Red Crescent response to emergencies. The DREF is a vital part of the International Federation's disaster response system and increases the ability of national societies to respond to disasters.

CHF 34,000 (USD 32,701 or EUR 20,982) has been allocated from the Federation's Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) to support the national society in delivering immediate assistance to some 300 beneficiaries. Unearmarked funds to repay DREF are encouraged.

Summary: On 2 June 2008 a severe storm hit the area around Darsilameh village in the Western Region of Gambia. The storm caused damage to more than 15 compounds, directly affecting more than 300 persons. Houses were destroyed, and the families therefore have no shelter. The Government (through the Governor of the Western Region) created a crisis committee to coordinate the provision of support and assistance. The Gambia Red Cross Society (GRCS) volunteers from the Western Region branch assisted those affected to move belongings from their ruined houses, and carried out assessments. The GRCS plans to distribute roofing repair kits.

This operation is expected to be implemented over two weeks, and will therefore be completed by 30 June 2008. A Final Report will be made available three months after the end of the operation (by 5 August 2008).

The situation

On 2 June 2008 at around 14:00 hours a squall of some 25-30 knots hit the area around Darsilameh village in the Western Region of the Gambia. According to the hydro meteorological reports, the southerly direction of the squall resulted in severe damage to more than 15 compounds affecting more than 300 persons. Houses were destroyed, leaving limited shelter alternatives.

Coordination and partnerships

The government through the Governor Western Region created a crisis committee to coordinate assessments and the delivery of assistance. The Western Region Area Council provided a 10-day food ration (rice). An assessment team comprising representatives of the Governor's office, the Gambia Red Cross (Western Region branch) and the Brikama Area council visited the affected community on 2 June. The team coordinated by the GRCS branch collected secondary information from the Governor's office and compiled a needs assessment report. The team visited 15 compounds in the village, out of the 113 households that were affected.

All planned activities will be implemented by regional teams, branch field coordinators and Red Cross volunteers, with supervision from the GRCS national headquarters.

Contact information

For further information specifically related to this operation please contact:

In The Gambia: Mrs Ndey S.Bakurin, Secretary General, The Gambia Red Cross Society, Banjul, Email: ;; phone +2204393179, 4392405, 4396989, 4373568

In Dakar: Alasan Senghore, Head of Zone, West and Central Africa Zone, phone:+221 869 36 40, Fax:+221 33 820 25 34, email:; Youcef Aitchellouche, Disaster Management Coordinator, email:

In Geneva: Niels Scott, Operations Coordinator for West Africa; phone: +41.22.730.4527; email: or Tunay Firat, Officer, Management Support Team, phone: +41.22.730.4415; email: