Panama: Floods DREF Operation Update no. 1 (MDRPA008)

Situation Report
Originally published
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Summary: 104,620 Swiss francs were allocated from the IFRC’s Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) on 7 August 2012 to support the Red Cross Society of Panama (RCSP) in delivering assistance to some 2,500 beneficiaries.

At the end of July, severe rainfall and the occurrence of a waterspout affected the provinces of Bocas del Toro and Los Santos with flooding and wind damage to roofs and crops. Approximately 4,300 persons were affected in the two provinces. With support of the IFRC’s DREF the Red Cross Society of Panama (RCSP) was able to reach some 2,500 beneficiaries with blankets, hygiene and kitchen kits, jerry cans, mosquito nets and tarpaulins. Additionally, the RCSP began to implement Participatory Hygiene and Sanitation Transformation (PHAST) and Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Promotion (WASH) workshops with the beneficiaries. The remainder of the PHAST and WASH workshops and the Epidemic Control for Volunteers training will be completed in the last month of the operation..

During the last two weeks in October, the country was affected by flooding in the same communities that were being supporting with this DREF funding. Furthermore, many activities had been halted because of civil unrest/ demonstrations in different provinces related to the passing of a new law. Even though the majority of activities had been completed or are underway, the disruption caused by the civil unrest divided the resouces of the RCSP and therefore the National Society requested an extension of one month in order to close the financial reports. The operation will therefore be completed by December 2012. In line with the IFRC’s reporting standards, the final report (narrative and financial) is due 90 days after the end of the operation (by March 2013).

The major donors and partners of DREF include the Australian, American and Belgian governments, the Austrian Red Cross, the Canadian Red Cross and government, Danish Red Cross and government, the European Commission Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection (ECHO), the Irish and the Italian governments, the Japanese Red Cross Society, the Luxembourg government, the Monaco Red Cross and government, the Netherlands Red Cross and government, the Norwegian Red Cross and government, the Spanish Government, the Swedish Red Cross and government, the United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID), the Medtronic and Z Zurich Foundations, and other corporate and private donors. The IFRC, on behalf of the Red Cross Society of Panama, would like to extend thanks to all for their generous contributions. The Directorate-General for Humanitarian Aid (DG ECHO) has replenished the DREF to the amount of 50 per cent of the allocation made to this operation.