Iran + 4 more

International Save the Children Alliance: Summary of emergency appeal

Regions: Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Middle East, Turkey
Title of appeal: Emergency Preparedness Response for Iraq

Lead Agency(ies): Iraq / Iran - SC-UK

Turkey / Jordan / Kuwait - Save US

Location, date: London, 28 February 2003

Total Appeal Target: US $ 10,000,000

I Save the Children's presence in the region/country

Save the Children has worked in northern Iraq since 1991, starting with an emergency response for displaced people and returnees from Iran and Turkey. Save the Children worked in rural rehabilitation programmes until 1997, during which time our emergency response capacity was increased through responding to the needs of displaced people in 1991 and 1996 and to a cholera outbreak in 1994.

In 1996 Save the Children responded to a large Iraqi refugee population in Iran through the provision of non-food items along with humanitarian support to displaced people in border areas and those from the town of Kirkuk. In each of these cases, partnerships were established with the UN, International Committee for the Red Cross and Red Crescent (ICRC) and local NGOs.

In addition to its long-standing programme in Iraq, Save the Children is well positioned regionally to respond to any future humanitarian emergency with a presence in Jordan, Turkey, Kuwait, Iran as well as Northern Iraq.

II Background to current situation - issues for children

Decades of intermittent war in Iraq have resulted in a severe degradation of basic infrastructure and social service systems. Despite the country's classification as a middle-income country, most Iraqis find it difficult to meet even basic survival needs.

War, be it temporary or long-term, in Iraq will exacerbate an already critical humanitarian situation. There are currently 1 million internally displaced persons (IDPs) in northern Iraq, and estimates are that as many as 1 million more may be internally displaced in the event of war. This displacement will most likely occur within an even more degraded environment in terms of access to health facilities, water, sanitation, and food.

In the belief that people are best able to survive and thrive while they have access to their assets and family/community support structures of their neighborhoods and villages, Save the Children's strategic response to this crisis will emphasize and prioritize keeping people in their homes, as long it does not put them in harm's way. However, it is highly likely that large segments of the population will be displaced and their needs must also be supported. Therefore, Save the Children will also offer assistance to internally displaced populations and host communities.

Children under 5, pregnant and lactating women, and IDPs will be particularly vulnerable. Children will be adversely affected as a result of displacement, the breakdown of social infrastructure, and government services. These conditions will cause disease, malnutrition, and family separation. Outbreak of disease can be expected to create specific health risks for mothers and children, leading to increased rates of morbidity and mortality amongst this population.

III Save the Children's response

It is expected that the problems described will be present throughout the entire country of Iraq Accordingly, Save the Children has planned a broad-based geographic response. The proposed Save the Children project will work in the North in current areas of operations (Dahuk, Sulaimaniyah, and Arbil), other areas in the north now under Iraqi Government control, central areas, Baghdad and environs, and the South -initially out of our Kuwait office. In collaboration with other organisations and through on the ground assessments, Save the Children will identify specific project locations where needs are greatest.

The overall aim of our response will be to prevent excess mortality and reduce morbidity among Iraqi children and their families displaced, at-risk, or otherwise vulnerable as a result of conflict, or years of infrastructure decay and neglect. To achieve this aim we will work in the following sectors:

i) Distribution of Non-Food Items:

Provision of shelter in the form of tents and plastic sheeting. In addition, distribute household items (blankets, jerry cans, children's clothes and shoes and cooking sets) to targeted populations.

Providing basic home equipment to assist targeted families to rapidly return to a normal situation and to assist in the recovery of human dignity.

Appeal Target: US $ 4,500,000

ii) Health:

To provide basic medicines, medical equipment, training and disease surveillance to sites in Iraq and regionally.

To promote community hygiene through the distribution of family hygiene packs, cleaning equipment and waste disposal facilities. Distribute nutritional products to vulnerable targeted populations.

Appeal Target: US $ 2,000,000

iii) Nutrition:

Targeted feeding programmes to reduce malnutrition and mortality among Iraqi children and women of childbearing age in affected rural and urban communities. Mother and Child Health (MCH) staff and Traditional Birth Assistants (TBAs) will be assisted to provide lactation support and to provide formula feeds. Equipment for safe administration of formula feeds will be distributed.

Appeal Target: US $ 1,500,000

iv) Child Protection & Emergency Education Activities:

A key issue will be to ensure that children remain with their families since they are their primary protectors.

Therefore preventing separation of children and where necessary actively ensuring reunification are key components of Save the Children emergency responses. This is achieved through a process of information dissemination, training and advocacy around the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). Furthermore, ensuring that children in camps receive adequate protection against exploitation and abuse is another key concern, as is working to establish an important sense of normality for children through education activities.

Appeal Target: US $ 700,000

iv) Food Security

This will initially involve establishing a broad knowledge basis for food aid system troubleshooting, and sound food aid and food security programming. This will involve Rapid Food Security Needs Assessment, nutritional status surveys in secure, accessible areas training and identification of vulnerable groups

Action plans will then be drawn up for the restoration of household livelihoods and/or developing agricultural productive capacity and these implemented as peace and security return

Appeal Target: US $500,000

v) Water and sanitation

To reduce to a minimum, the disturbance and contamination of source watersheds and provide an emergency supply of sufficient potable water to the community at large and institutions such as health centres.

Appeal Target: US $800,000

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