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South Asia: Appeal 2009-2010 (MAA52001) Programme Update No. 02

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This report covers the period 1 July to 31 December 2009.

Programme purpose: As outlined in the 2009-10 plan, the aim of the International Federation is to coordinate and support efforts at country and regional level to assist South Asian national societies to scale up their work to improve the lives of vulnerable people.

Programme summary: The disaster season throughout the region was relatively calm in its first half though Sri Lanka witnessed one of its worst dengue outbreaks in years as health authorities scrambled to contain the disease.

Late floods in India during October affected six different states across the country, out of which Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka were the most affected.

In Nepal, the 2008 Koshi River floods appeal closed at the end of August. Another flood /landslide in the first week of October 2009 affected more than 14 districts of the far western region of Nepal. The flood and landslides claimed 62 lives, affecting more than 27,000 families and more than 150,000 individuals. Following an assessment, a Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) of approximately CHF 307,000 (USD 294,763 or EUR 205,656) has been allocated for the distribution of non-food items to some 4,000 affected families and replenishment of emergency stocks

During the cyclone Aila operation, Bangladesh Red Crescent Society (BDRCS) and the International Federation successfully completed the distribution of shelter kits and household items to 7,000 the affected families in Satkhira and Khulna districts. Low-lying areas of the northern, north-eastern and central districts of Bangladesh were inundated by heavy downpour and flash flood during the third week of August 2009. However, considering the overall improvement of the flood situation and intervention by the government through its safety net programmes, no international intervention was needed.

Due to military operations in south Waziristan in Pakistan, a fresh group of internally displaced people are moving into western Punjab. Approximately 200,000 displaced people are expected to leave the conflict area. According to government estimates, 2,500 to 3,000 displaced families are still staying back in Hazara division and Attock district. Latest figures on the displaced people suggest that more than 1.65 million (out of 2.7 million) displaced families have returned to their homes in Malakand division. Some 7,200 displaced families have so far received non-food items.

Financial situation: The total 2009 budget was revised downwards from CHF 3,158,085 (USD 3,161,246 or EUR 2,094,790) to CHF 2,241,787 (USD 2,244,031 or EUR 1,487,000) based on the programmes' workplan and funding situation. Coverage is 135 per cent while expenditure from January to October 2009 is 65 per cent of the total 2009 budget. The financial report from January to December 2009 will be issued with the 2009 annual report by April 2010.

No. of people we help: The South Asia regional office supports the seven national societies and seven country offices of the International Federation in South Asia. The South Asia regional office is also actively working with the authorities in Bhutan providing disaster management and risk reduction training for their leadership. The region includes Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, out of which the national societies exist in all except Bhutan. Please refer to the country reports for the number of people reached in each country.

Our partners: The main partners supporting the regional programmes during 2009 were the American, British, Danish, Finnish, Japanese and Swedish Red Cross Societies, along with the European Commission/ECHO, British Department for International Development (DFID) and World Bank (GFDRR). Technical partnerships/relations were also maintained with the Asian Disaster Preparedness Centre, the South Asia Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) disaster management centre, United Nations (UN) International Strategy for Disaster Response, World Bank (through the ProVention consortium), other UN organizations, governmental and non-governmental organizations under the regional disaster management programme; and with the World Health Organization, networks of people living with HIV, government ministries and civil society organizations under the regional health and care programmes. The South Asia regional office also maintained strong cooperation with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and links with the World Food Programme, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and United Nations Agency for International Development (USAID). Further, close cooperation was continued with international media agencies like Reuters, BBC and CNN for efficient information flow, especially during disasters.

The International Federation, on behalf of the national societies in the South Asia region, would like to thank the above mentioned partners for their generous support.