Summary of revisions made to the Emergency Plan of Action (EPoA):
This Operation Update is issued to acknowledge challenges, mainly in-country security constraints, encountered since the start of this DREF’s operation, causing delays in its implementation. Some activities could not be completed as planned. The Niger Red Cross Society (NRCS) is consequently requesting a two-month extension of the DREF operational timeframe up to 25 January 2018, to complete the implementation of remaining activities.
Amongst challenges encountered:
The transfer of funds from the DREF to the National Society were delayed, resulting in the postponement the start of the operation;
Regarding the implementation of nutrition activities, UNICEF is providing nutritional food for the SAM and WFP is providing nutritional food for the MAM, while the Ministry of Health, through the health centers, is responsible for the care and treatment of the malnourished people at the health center’s level. The Niger Red Cross Society through this DREF operation is responsible for the community-based malnutrition screening and the transfer of the severe cases at the health centers for better care. Only after the launch of this operation, when Red Cross volunteers were already actively screening malnourished, pregnant and lactating women for malnutrition at community level, and referring them to health centers, was it discovered that people were not receiving any care because of the shortage of supplementary food at these health centers. This was the case for 17 Health Centers of the Loga Health district. The root cause of this issue seemed to reside with communication problems between health centers and partners responsible for providing the supplementary food. It is expected that the issue will now be resolved, in part with the support of NRCS’ support, facilitating the communications between stakeholders with their field presence. While the situation is resolving itself, it resulted in delaying the implementation of the activities nonetheless. To date, the community-based screening has started afresh, and the activities are now ongoing.
On 5 October 2017, when four Americans and five Nigerien soldiers were attacked and killed in the Tillabery region, neighboring the Dosso region, although it was out of the DREF implementation area, the government of Niger instructed humanitarian organizations to suspend their activities in the region for at least two weeks for security reasons. This has again, caused the interruption of the activities for at least ten days.
Based on the above reasons, a two-month extension, until 25 January 2018, is requested to enable the Niger Red Cross Society to complete the planned activities. The revision of the timeframe will not have impact on the budget nor the core of the plan of action.