This report covers the period of 1 May through 30 September 2008, but reports cumulative totals from December 2004 onwards.
In a world of global challenges, continued poverty, inequity, and increasing vulnerability to disasters and disease, the International Federation with its global network, works to accomplish its Global Agenda, partnering with local community and civil society to prevent and alleviate human suffering from disasters, diseases and public health emergencies.
Executive Summary: In Eastern Africa, Somalia and the Seychelles were the countries most affected by the tsunami.
Four years after the 26 December 2004 tsunami that hit the north-east coast of Somalia, the Somali Red Crescent Society (SRCS) continued to work with the affected communities to strengthen long-term community resilience to disasters and further their disaster response capacities. Vulnerability and capacity assessments (VCA) have been conducted in 11 branches with 195 volunteers and 36 SRCS staff participating. During the reporting period, 55,288 people from the tsunami-affected communities received health services through the SRCS network of clinics and outreach delivery. In order to reach out to more communities, SRCS adopted the "community-based first aid (CBFA) in Action" approach in the implementation of its activities. Five clubs (naadiga) have been constructed to provide a permanent base for the activities of the disaster response volunteers. These activities will receive continued support until the end of the year. The training and preparation of emergency response teams (ERT) at selected branches and sub-branches has been shifted till early 2009.
Operational challenges such as insecurity, conflict, political instability, drought and inflation led to modest implementation of programme activities. This in turn led to the revision of plans and budget of the American Red Cross supported component of the tsunami programme, which has been reported separately.
The Federation's Somalia office continued to give SRCS technical and financial support. The ICRC supports SRCS in the conflict areas in the South and Central Zone (SCZ) of Somalia. The Norwegian Red Cross and the German Red Cross have bilateral programmes in rehabilitation and water and sanitation respectively.
The Seychelles Red Cross has become a major player in disaster management in the Seychelles since the Indian Ocean tsunami. This has meant greater needs in terms of human resource development and other organizational development needs. A closer working relationship with government departments has highlighted the need to clearly define the auxiliary role of the national society vis à vis the local authorities. Defining the auxiliary role of the national society remains a challenge as much of their activities are implemented in partnership with the ministry of health.
Activities on the construction of the national society premises have been restrained by rising prices and the unavailability of the quantity surveyor for a period of time. The total cost of the construction is no longer covered by available earmarked funds and the current economic situation both locally and internationally, has severely restrained the national society's ability to raise funds. With the help of the British Red Cross, the national society has trained the necessary instructors and further developed its commercial first aid business. It has also been working in close collaboration with the ministry of health in increasing blood donor recruitment in the country.
Design and implementation of human resource and finance and administration procedures have improved the efficiency of the national society.