Russian Federation Appeal No. 20/2002: Floods in the Northern Caucasus and South of Russia Operations Final Report

Situation Report
Originally published


The Federation's mission is to improve the lives of vulnerable people by mobilizing the power of humanity. It is the world's largest humanitarian organization and its millions of volunteers are active in 178 countries. For more information:
Appeal N=B0 20/2002; Launched on: 19 July 2002 for 8 months for CHF 397,000 (revised from CHF 1,267,000) to assist 12,500 beneficiaries.
Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) Allocated: CHF 50,000
Period covered: 19 July 2002 -- 31 May 2003;
Last Operations Update (no. 4) issued 24 April 2003.

The financial report attached, at the end, shows a small negative balance, which is expected to be covered under an existing donor contract.


Heavy rains in the second half of June 2002 and August 2002 - the worst in 70 years - resulted in floods that caused landslides in nine regions (Adygea, Kabardino-Balkaria, Karachaevo-Cherkessia, Ingushetia, North Ossetia, Chechnya, Dagestan Republics, Stavropol region, and Krasnodar Krai) in the South of Russia. The disaster killed 231, according to Emercom (Russian Federation Ministry of Emergencies), and affected more than 335,000 people in over 370 settlements. Over 30,000 homes were destroyed or damaged. Local infrastructure was severely affected. Material loss was estimated at 19,405 million Russian Roubles (over USD 515 million). Another disaster in North Ossetia in September 2002 exacerbated the situation. An avalanche sent ice, rocks and mud showering on nearby settlements that were already struggling to recover from the floods. The Russian President criticised local authorities for their insufficient prevention measures, slow reaction and inability to meet essential needs.

On 19 July 2002, the Russian Red Cross, with International Federation support, launched an appeal for assistance to flood victims in affected areas. In October 2002, due to lack of donor interest, the budget (CHF 1,267,000 to CHF 397,000) - and consequently the operation - was revised. Assistance was provided only to the three most affected regions: Krasnodar Krai, Adygea Republic and Dagestan.

Procurement and distribution of relief goods was completed. Interviews with beneficiaries in May 2003 (please see Assessment and lessons learned section below for further details) indicated the success of the operation. However, needs remain great, and the number of vulnerable people is much greater than those who benefited from this operation.


The Russian Red Cross and the Federation worked with Emercom (Russian Federation Ministry of Emergencies), Ministry of Health and social welfare departments at the regional and central levels. The Russian government/ Emercom established an Executive Commission in Moscow in June 2002 to lead and coordinate state and non government post-disaster assistance, including the repair of critical infrastructure. At the regional level Russian Red Cross joined the Floods Commissions with representatives from Emercom, regional welfare departments, technical services, local administrations. Emercom provided up-to-date data throughout the operation. Russian Red Cross headquarters provided regular operation updates to the government. Locally, the Russian Red Cross confirmed beneficiary lists with social welfare departments.

Local administrations assisted it to deliver and distribute relief. UN OCHA also played a key role in coordinating international assistance. The Head of Federation Delegation (Russia) met the UN representative in the region in the initial stages of the operation to provide an update on Red Cross action and ensure coordination. Although needs in the region remain high, coordination between state and non government organisations ensured that aid reached beneficiaries effectively.

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