ACT Rapid Response Payment No. 21/2007: Hurricane Dean - Jamaica


Funds Sent To: Christian Aid

Amount Sent: 20,000 US$

Date: 7 September 2007

Emergency: Hurricane Dean – Jamaica

Date of Emergency: 19 August 2007

Implementing Partner: Christian Aid together with Children First

Details of Payment

Emergency: On August 19, 2007, Hurricane Dean, a powerful Category 5 storm, hit the island country of Jamaica. Torrential rain and strong winds with maximum gusts of 233 km/h (145mph) created large-scale devastation to homes, livelihoods, electricity and water supply systems. Christian Aid and seven implementing partner staff carried out a rapid needs assessment in St. Thomas, Clarendon, St. Catherine and the inner city of Kingston from August 21-25. The following details are some of the main findings from the assessment and other reports:

Shelter: Due to the high velocity winds, most of the roofs have been blown off in the worst affected areas. While some houses can be repaired, it is reported that 75,000-100,000 families are in need of shelter assistance. In the coastal area of Portland Cottage, there is 100% destruction to houses.

Livelihoods: Agriculture production has been severely affected, which is the main source of livelihood for many villagers. Decreased availability of food crops like bananas, cassava, corns and vegetables is expected in the coming months. The effects of the hurricane will also have huge implications on the island’s cash crops including coffee and spices. A vast majority of small-scale poultry farmers lost their chickens, an important livelihood measure for rural villagers.

Water, Health and Hygiene: The water supply has been severely affected in the worst hit areas. Water tankers are used to supply water, but there are reports of a scarcity of drinking water. Though there are no reports of epidemics, the possibility of this cannot be ruled out due to the following reasons: (i) scarcity of drinking water, (ii) inadequate sanitation measures because pit latrines in rural areas are either destroyed or flooded and (iii) in appropriate waste management systems. In addition, it was observed that the emergency has also affected the psychosocial well-being of some of the victims.

Education: There are reports that some of the schools have been either totally or partially destroyed. UNICEF reports that an estimated 90,000 children have been directly or indirectly affected by the hurricane.

Food security: At present, food is still available for most affected families in St. Thomas, but the available stock may be depleted within one to two weeks. In some places in St. Thomas, supermarkets have begun rationing and only two pounds of essential items like rice and flour are available to families. Hence there is a need to provide basic food item support.

Proposed Assistance

Christian Aid, along with its implementing partner Children First, is planning to provide immediate humanitarian assistance to 350 severely affected families within specific communities inside Spanish Town and Old Harbour Bay in St. Catherine, one of the worst affected parishes.

The implementation of this assistance program will be done by Christian Aid in partnership with the community stakeholders including parents, children and young people in the target communities and also with the Parish Disaster Committee in Old Harbour Bay. Special attention will be given to identify persons who are not registered for assistance or support under any other formal programs.

Specific Objectives:

- provision of 350 hygiene kits

- provision of food for 150 families

- provision of 100 tarpaulins

- provision of 60 baby kits including pampers and baby food

- provision of 25 mattresses for displaced families/children

- provide cleaning agents/chainsaws to assist in the clearing of debris and the sanitation process

Implementation Process:

The activities for the above objectives will follow the following format and process:

- selection of target communities

- identification of beneficiaries

- registration of beneficiaries

- procurement of relief materials

- development of distribution forms and vouchers

- distribution of materials

- monitoring of the distribution process

- reporting

Monitoring and Management

The assistance and distribution efforts will be monitored through a disaster coordinating team, which includes a distribution coordinator. Christian Aid and its implementing partner, Children First, will document the progress of the activities in relation to each objective and will seek to record any challenges or lessons learned during the distribution process. Regular reports will be provided to the ACT Coordinating Office.

Christian Aid will ensure that appropriate financial and management procedures are established to ensure the smooth operation of the program. Christian Aid will coordinate with other major government agencies, NGOs and other church-affiliated organisations in the country.

Implementation Period

The relief program was already started the last week of August. This program will be incorporated into an ACT appeal, which will be submitted in the second week of September 2007.


Type of
No. of
Direct Assistance
Food Relief Assistance
Food Stamps (to buy canned food, flour, rice, sugar and cooking oil)
Food Stamp
Subtotal - Food Relief
Non Food Assistance
Hygiene Kits
Baby Kits
Matresses (8 Inch Double Mattress)
Subtotal Non Food AssistanceA


The ACT Co-ordinating Office has approved the use of US$ 20,000 towards the budget from its Rapid Response Fund and would be grateful to receive contributions to wholly or partially replenish this payment.

For further information please contact:

John Nduna, ACT DirectorPhone: ++41 22 791 6032, Email: jhn@act-intl.org


Michael Zschiegner, ACT Programme Officer, Phone: ++ 41 22 791 64 20, Email: mzs@act-intl.org

ACT Web Site address: http://www.act-intl.org