South Sudan

REACH starts Flood Vulnerability Mapping in South Sudan

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South Sudan: Warrap State in South Sudan is frequently affected by floods. Last year, an interagency assessment conducted in August 2012 reported that 8,580 individuals were affected across the State. Many locations in Warrap were even rendered inaccessible by flooding.

Lack of accessibility creates severe challenges for an efficient humanitarian response in the event of flooding, including restrictions in the ability to identify gaps in the emergency flood response; to determine vulnerability of the communities affected; and the needs of communities. In response to these challenges, the Shelter / Non-food Items (NFI) Cluster in South Sudan, in partnership with REACH, is conducting a flood vulnerability mapping exercise across Warrap State.

Based on satellite imagery provided by UNOSAT, villages in the most flood prone areas have been identified and are now being assessed. The geographical data available on South Sudan is outdated, with some locations having not been verified for decades. The REACH field team is therefore cross checking available maps with local authorities and elders, to ensure the villages affected by floods can be identified and assessed.

The assessment of these areas started in June and will continue for 2 months using mobile data collection technology. The analysis is expected to be complete in September 2013 and will inform the drafting of a shelter and NFI contingency plan for the Shelter / NFI cluster in addition to providing invaluable information for the design of activities that can improve resilience and preparedness of communities. The contingency plan will be complemented by flood-resistant shelter designs, which will be produced by a Shelter Expert to ensure these are culturally and environmentally appropriate.

The flood vulnerability mapping in Warrap aims to strengthen the coordination between NGOs during flood emergency responses and to provide information to NGOs and the South Sudanese government and lead to the formation of a sound disaster risk reduction strategy in Warrap State.

To read more about REACH in South Sudan, please visit our country page.