Georgia

UN Georgia Information Bulletin for the period of 01-10 Mar 2000

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UMCOR Implements a Primary Healthcare Programme
Since 1999, the United Methodists Committee on Relief (UMCOR) has been implementing a Primary Healthcare programme in western Georgia in response to the overwhelming need in rural Georgia for improvements in the primary healthcare sector. The programme integrates assistance in the education sector, physical rehabilitation of primary healthcare facilities, community participation, and access to critical medicines needed for primary healthcare.

As such, the programme includes renovation of rural ambulatory clinics and central district-level polyclinics. Local physicians and nurses will receive training. The population will be provided with required essential pharmaceuticals through the creation of a persistent medical supply system in the ambulatory clinics. Within the programme a cost-recovery system, which will allow ambulatories to be free from reliance solely on federal funding will be introduced and developed. The programme also envisages setting up community health committees in the districts, and establishing mother to mother support groups in ambulatories.

Projects have begun in Sachkhere, Tkibuli, and Lanchkhuti. It is planned that Chiatura will be added this year. The total number of target beneficiaries in the four districts is 201,000 persons.

It is anticipated that the general impact of the planned activities will be the improvement of the population's health status in the targeted areas. Education and training will provide benefits beyond the project period, which will aid in the sustainability of healthcare improvements.

UMCOR hopes that the project will establish a model of primary healthcare in rural Georgia, and will help to constitute a model for analogous projects in Georgia.

Meeting on Vulnerability Surveys Held at UN House

On 7 March, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) hosted a meeting on vulnerability surveys in Georgia at the UN House in Tbilisi. The aim of the meeting was to share information on forthcoming or ongoing vulnerability surveys.

The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) reported that in June 1999, it conducted a survey to measure indicators for monitoring goals related to the World Summit for Children. A report is being finalised and is expected to be published by the end of March. Prior to this survey, in April-May 1999, UNICEF conducted a health and education situation analysis, the results of which were finalised two weeks ago.

The United Nations Population Fund (FPA) reported that the first phase of field work for the Georgia Reproductive Health Survey has been completed. The objective of the survey is to assess the current reproductive health situation in Georgia by obtaining data on fertility, abortion, contraception, and other indicators. Preliminary results will be reported in June.

The World Food Programme's (WFP) Vulnerability Assessment and Mapping exercise (VAM) started in September 1999. The aim of the VAM is to identify poverty areas and draw vulnerability household profiles on a regional level. Also the VAM will help WFP adjust its activities through improved beneficiary targeting.

The aim of the Georgian Winter Heating Assistance Project (GWHAP) financed by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and implemented by Counterpart International was to identify vulnerable persons who might benefit from the subsided electricity available through the GWHAP.

Save the Children, the recipient of the USAID 8,000,000 USD umbrella grant for the Georgian Assistance Initiative (GAI), which covers Guria, Imereti and Samegrelo regions, has launched the GAI Multi-sectoral Baseline Survey. The aim of the survey is to establish a specific definition for vulnerability and to set thresholds of need in the shelter, health, social infrastructure, and income generation sectors. Also within the framework of GAI, the International Mercy Corps (IMC), together with Curatio International Foundation, conducted a population survey on health and primary healthcare services in western Georgia. The survey will assist in the selection of target communities. UMCOR is implementing a survey in the agricultural sector within the GAI. The survey investigates household agricultural production, land tenure, ownership of domestic animals and other related issues. CARE is implementing a survey in the shelter and social infrastructure sectors as part of the GAI. The main objective is to identify rehabilitation needs and to obtain information on social infrastructure.

The International Rescue Committee (IRC) has completed two needs assessment surveys, both funded by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). One covers western Georgia and Shida Kartli, the second Samtskhe-Javakheti. UNDP anticipates making both reports available in April.

Johns Hopkins University/Population Communications Services has held a survey with the assistance of GORBI International in order to determine general contraceptive knowledge and attitudes.

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (the International Federation) discussed five surveys. A Vulnerability and Capacity Assessment based on secondary data is ongoing and will be used to assist the Federation in analysing and adjusting its programmes. An Isolated Elderly Food Intake Survey was recently completed. It provides baseline data on the food intake of the lonely elderly in Georgia receiving food assistance from the International Federation in order to assess their nutritional requirements. A survey on the physical condition of IDP collective centres has studied 760 centres Georgia-wide to determine rehabilitation needs. A cross-sectional survey of 400 households living in Jvari, Samegrelo was conducted in November 1999. This survey investigated the living conditions of the population of Jvari to determine their need for emergency assistance. Finally, the International Federation is elaborating a survey on IDPs. This forthcoming survey will aim to compare the socio-economic conditions of IDPs and the general population. This survey is a collaboration with the New Approach to IDP Assistance Programme that is being elaborated by the Georgian government with assistance from UNDP, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the World Bank, and OCHA.

Minutes of the meeting and a matrix on vulnerability surveys are available at OCHA.

SECTORS

Income Generation

From December 1999, to February 2000, the Charity Humanitarian Centre "Abkhazeti" (CHCA) conducted a training programme on Borrowing and Managing Funds for Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) in western Georgia. The programme was funded by the US Agency for International Development (USAID), and administered by the Academy for Educational Development. CHCA provided business training on Borrowing and Managing Funds to SMEs in Kutaisi (two training courses), Zestaponi, Poti, Zugdidi, and Batumi. More specifically, training focused on financial management; modern accounting; business planning; developing a marketing strategy; market research; loan management; taxation; and business law. The training also introduced participants to sources of capital currently available in Georgia, as well as the criteria and requirements of banks and other credit provider services. In total more than 120 representatives of SMEs have received intensive training

Psychological Rehabilitation

The United Nations Volunteers (UNV) has funded a radio-service for IDPs in Zugdidi implemented by the Zugdidi-based NGO "Khronikoni". The project aims to provide IDPs with access to information. It also includes a period for on air psychological counselling. During this period IDPs may call the programme and discuss issues over the air. In order to make the project equally accessible to all IDPs there will be 20 radio sets mounted in 10 community centres in Zugdidi.

Shelter

From 1 to 9 March, Counterpart International delivered clothing and shoes to 500 veterans of World War II in Kutaisi through the International Association "Veteran". Children with cerebral palsy at the boarding school "Tonus" have received paper.

The Islamic Republic of Iran has sent winter clothing and food consisting of 5 tons of canned food, 2 tons of tea, 10 tons of rice, and 5 tons of beans to Chechen refugees residing in Pankisi Valley. The aid will be distributed by the Georgian Red Cross Society.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

On 10 March 2000, the US Agency for International Development (USAID) posted a Request for Applications (RFA) for the Georgia Community Mobilisation Initiative (GCMI) on the USAID Web-site.

USAID is seeking applications for Co-operative Agreements from qualifying U.S. organisations for funding a programme of Humanitarian and Transition Assistance to targeted vulnerable communities in the country of Georgia. Subject to the availability of funds, USAID intends to provide approximately 25 million USD in USAID funding for a four-year period, no further funding is anticipated. It is anticipated that two separate co-operative agreements will be awarded as a result of this RFA, one for West Georgia and one for East Georgia, excluding Abkhazia.

For details and a complete application package, the RFA may be downloaded from: http://www.info.usaid.gov/ftp_data/pub/OP/RFA/11400002/

On 8 March, a presentation of a report on the "Status of Women in Georgia" took place. The document is jointly published by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Gender in Development (GID) Project. It discusses the role of women in Georgia; gender equality; women's economic participation; access to basic services; and ways of promoting the advancement of women.

English and Georgian copies of the research are available at GID. Tel.: (995 32) 99 87 69.

The Centre for Children and Youth Programmes L. S. L. is a Georgian non-governmental organisation established in June 1999. The aim of the organisation is to encourage talented children and adolescents to fully express their abilities and take care of their future development. Within the framework of its long-term programme "A Door to Future" L. S. L. has provided clothing to the Akhalgori orphanage, Tbilisi #1 and #2 auxiliary schools, homeless children residing at the Child and Environment's shelter, and vulnerable families with many children. The organisation has also participated in different humanitarian activities organised by various international and local NGOs.

Currently L. S. L. is seeking funds for different activities such as: summer camps for vulnerable children, competitions and festivals for boarding schools, and the establishment of a child's rights' defender's office.

All interested organisations and individuals can contact the organisation at: 74a, Chavchavadze Av. 2nd floor, room 212. Tel.: 22 17 65. E-mail: lslcentre@hotmail.com or smart@access.sanet.ge

Produced by OCHA Georgia. For more information, please contact Ms. Nino Zhvania, Information Officer
Tel/Fax: 995-32-959516; Tel: 995-32-943163; e-mail: unocha@unocha.org.ge
Contributions are welcome and should reach OCHA, 9 Eristavi St., Tbilisi by 12.00hrs. on 9th, 19th, and 29th of each month.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.