The centre, which is co-funded by Ireland and UN Habitat, aims to provide technical assistance to help home owners to reconstruct or repair their damaged houses and to increase their awareness of safe rebuilding techniques approved by the Earthquake Reconstruction and Rehabilitation Authority (ERRA).
IOM teams of social mobilizers, engineers and master trainers based in Abbottabad will identify affected people with training needs, train artisans on seismically-resistant building techniques, provide capacity building to local authorities and distribute related information material in 15 union councils of the district.
In coordination with ERRA and under the supervision of UN Habitat experts, four teams began visits to remote villages this week.
At the local level, the HRC will work in close cooperation with the government District Reconstruction Unit (DRU.)
The project also aims to establish Village Reconstruction Committees (VRCs) to ensure implementation of ERRA guidelines on rural reconstruction and help the government's Assistance and Inspection Teams (AITs) to address public complaints.
"The reconstruction centre will contribute towards ERRA's policy of Build Back Better and help restore the long term stability of affected communities," says project manager Arshad Rashid.
The union councils where reconstruction training, technical assistance, capacity building and awareness raising programmes will be implemented include Boi, Dalola, Kukmong, Dhamtour, Jhangi, Beerangali, Nagri Bala, Namli Maira, Nathia Gali, Tajwal, Pattan Kalan, Birote Kalan, Palak and Nambal.
IOM will implement programme activities in eight of the district's 15 union councils. Three partner organizations - Omar Asghar Khan Development Foundation (OAKDF), SUNGI Development Foundation and Inter Faith League Against Poverty (ILAP) - will provide support in the other seven union councils.
Since early last year, when the first of 12 HCRs was established by the government with support from UN Habitat, the centres have helped to provide technical training to more than 25,000 artisans in earthquake-resistant housing techniques.
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