Syria: Drought Emergency appeal n° MDRSY001- Final report


Period covered by this Final Report: 26

August 2009 to 31 December 2010

Appeal target (current): CHF 3,255,615

Appeal coverage: 49%;

Appeal history:

h This Emergency Appeal was initially launched on 26 August 2009 for CHF 3,255,615 for 12 months to assist 260,000 beneficiaries.

h Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF): CHF320,856 was initially allocated from the International Federation's DREF to support the National Society to respond. The allocation was later returned to the DREF.

h With Operation Update no 3 issued 1 September 2010 the Appeal was extended until 31 December. Summary: More than 280,000 persons including around 200 Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) volunteers were supported with activities from this Appeal. Despite 51 percent coverage of the appeal, SARC managed to exceed the number of people reached compared to the initial target. Almost 165,000 individuals received food assistance. Food was frequently mentioned as a priority by the communities and was much appreciated. The food aid became an important contribution to the families' daily food rations that for many consisted of tea and bread. Almost 110,000 beneficiaries received hygiene items to maintain basic hygiene which they otherwise could not afford; 279 health awareness sessions preceded the distributions.

Recent follow up visits to some of the affected communities gave an almost surprisingly positive feedback to the health awareness sessions with several examples of sustained behavioural changes. By boiling drinking water diarrhoea among the children have disappeared was The most important feedback received underscored the fact that diarrhoea among children has almost disappeared as a result of the effect of boiling drinking water 100,960 patient consultations were carried out from the launch in August 2009 to the end of this appeal in the six clinics located in the drought affected area l. These clinics together with additional four were supported and achievements reported under International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) appeal for displaced Iraqi populations. The number of patients is therefore not included in the number of people reached by this appeal to avoid duplication. With support from British Red Cross to this appeal, the clinics and MHUs were however supplied with supplementary feeding to children and additional medication to cover diseases related to drought, mainly diarrhoea and skin diseases, SARC clinic reports indicate that the number of children seen in the clinics dropped from around 11 percent early 2010 to around 3 percent in December. IFRC continues in 2011 to support 10 Syrian Arab Red Crescent health clinics and Almost 110,000 persons in the drought affected areas received hygiene parcels and enhanced awareness on hygiene and health thanks to Syrian Arab RC volunteers.

four mobile health units under the Appeal, Syria: Population Displaced from Iraq (MDRSY002):

SARC is increasingly working to mobilise communities and to enhance community resilience and reduce risks. A gender focus has resulted in increasing numbers of women from the affected communities participating in the actual activities - in particular the health/hygiene awareness - to ensure sustainability of the intervention. There were strong links between the implementation of activities in this appeal and other Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) activities carried out by the National Society. The planting of 37,500 shrubs to prevent desertification and provide fodder for animals and an income generating project close to Hassakeh, and the chicken project, were supported with funds from this appeal. The drought response has developed capacities within the National Society on water emergencies - a new area for Syrian Arab RC. A national emergency team of 27 staff and volunteers now exists within the National Society trained to be deployed in case of another emergency. Household water treatment and safe water storage have been included in the health/hygiene promotion curricula and a whole set of promotion material has been developed together with the translation to Arabic of the International Federation manual on house hold water treatment. The population has not recovered from the drought and the situation for 2011 is still uncertain.

The objective to rehabilitate water and sanitation installations in schools is still very much needed but had to be cancelled due to limited coverage of the appeal.

The government is increasingly looking to support the people affected by the drought as a priority and the National Society is considering a possible continuation of its support.