Summary: CHF 148,635 was allocated from the IFRC’s Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) to support the Red Cross organizations in Kosovo in delivering immediate assistance to some 3,500 beneficiaries.
Due to strong winds that blew for 24 hours in Kosovo, followed by heavy snowfall on January 6th and 7th, several municipalities in Kosovo were affected by the natural disaster. The most affected municipalities were Istog, Kamenica and Peja. As a result of electricity blackout and broken communication lines, the flow of information was disrupted. However, the Red Cross organizations activated their disaster response teams in order to assess the situation and provide assistance.
During this operation, the weather conditions deteriorated further, and the month of February brought even more snowfall and storms causing even an avalanche that resulted in nine fatalities with one person rescued. The most affected municipalities in the second phase were Dragash, Peja, Deqan, Gjakova, Istog, Skenderaj, Kamenica, Vushtrri, MItrovica, Novo Brde, Viti, Gracanica, Rahovec, Podujeva, Klina, Prishtina, Kacanik, Prizren, Obiliq, Malisheva, Suhareka, Shtime, Strpce, Leposavic, Zubin Potok and Zvecan. Due to the additional number of affected persons and newly hit areas, another DREF operation was launched.
During this operation, by the end of February, 700 families were assisted with food items and blankets and plastic sheets. Out of them 400 families were also in need of firewood that was procured and distributed by the Red Cross organizations for them. Due to the favorable exchange rates and prices, the procurement of food parcels for additional 100 families was also possible.
A beneficiary satisfaction survey was conducted among the people assisted through the two DREF operations that were launched for responding to the extreme winter condition (strong wind and snowstorm) during January-February 2012. The report on the findings of the survey was published in May 2012. During the survey, a total of 370 families were interviewed in all of the affected areas covered by both of the DREF operations. 44 volunteers and 5 Red Cross staff were involved in conducting the survey.
This DREF operation was implemented over three months as planned, and was completed by 12 April 2012; now a Final Report (narrative and financial) is being submitted as required (before the expected date 12 July 2012).
The major donors and partners of DREF include the Australian, American and Belgian Governments, the Austrian Red Cross, the Canadian Red Cross and the Canadian Government, the Danish Red Cross and the Danish 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 the Monaco Government, the Netherlands Red Cross and the Netherlands Government, the Norwegian Red Cross and the Norwegian Government, the Spanish Government, the Swedish Red Cross and the Swedish 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 organizations in Kosovo, would like to extend their thanks to all donors and partners for their generous contributions. Details of all donors can be found at http://www.ifrc.org/docs/appeals/Active/MAA00010_2012.pdf