The West Coast Regional Representation (WCRR) programme is guided by the long-term planning framework (LTPF) 2012- 2015 designed to direct technical support to Benin, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana,
Liberia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone and Togo National Red Cross Societies. The year 2013 marks the mid-term of the LTPF implementation and the revision of the strategy to factor in developments in the humanitarian context and arising National Societies (NS) needs. The WCRR team increased in number and capacity to ensure adequate and efficient coverage of NS technical support needs. The IFRC team is arranged in a way that maintains proximity to the NS and concentrated where the programme requires intensified support such as in Nigeria, Liberia and Benin. The main focus this far has been programme development, management and governance training, enhancing disaster response capacity, resource mobilisation and performance monitoring.
Aligned to Strategy 2010, the set outcomes at various levels contributed to the global Business Lines’ strategic objectives that are most relevant West Coast Africa (WC) context thus: To grow humanitarian standards; and To strengthen Red Cross Red Crescent contribution to development.
The project’s overall objective is to increase technical support on institutional strengthening to the seven NS aimed at improving the quality of service delivery to most vulnerable people. For a budget of CHF 4.5 million, the collective support from our partners reached just over CHF 3.1 million by end of 2013.
Concerted efforts in humanitarian action remains paramount in West Coast where the populations in the seven countries recurrently succumb to the scourge of civil unrest, natural disasters, diseases aggravated by wide spread poverty. The inequalities in wealth distribution, limited access to amenities such health centre and schools leave the majority highly vulnerable, particularly the women and children. Responsively, the LTPF main stream programmes include disaster management (disaster risk reduction, response and preparedness), health and care (community- based health, water and sanitation, malaria, mother and child health, HIV and AIDS) and organisational development (NS development, PMER, and resource mobilisation).
Due to limited funding and human capacity and resources the disaster response operations are mostly supported by the IFRC disaster response emergency fund (DREF). The regional disaster management (DM) provided thematic support to the DREF operations whilst the PMER unit ensured regular monitoring and reporting. Logistics and human resource deployments including of the regional disaster response team (RDRT) members were some of the support services coordinated by the WCRR.
The strengthened PMER technical support ensured direct support to NS in monitoring, reporting, project design and strategic plan reviews. The finance development initiatives engaged in Liberia and Benin immensely contributed to strengthening NS accountability and transparency. However, more remains to be done in support the NS ailing with poor governance and management, thus a refocus for the remaining year of the LTPF implementation.
The WCRR has been challenged to increase effort on improving membership service delivery particularly on NS development and in in emergency operations. In that light, the WCRR during the third quarter of 2013 re-strategized its priorities to becoming more country focused. Two NS were selected for intensified capacity building on programme development and resource mobilisation, thus Ghana and Nigeria. Work has begun with capacity mapping and programme reviews. We are indebted to all our partners and donors for their support that has enabled the WCRR to support the NS to deliver quality services, at the same time strengthening their capacity. Our efforts could not be realised without the efforts of our members and implementing partners – the NS, their commitment and vibrancy in serving the vulnerable people is highly appreciated.