The heavy seasonal monsoon has brought strong winds and heavy rains across large part of Myanmar since third week July in this year. Monsoon rains and increased water levels in major rivers have caused seasonal floods in Myanmar.
Myanmar Red Cross Society (MRCS) embarked on a nance development journey in 2004, using a set of baselines focused on “measuring the impact of organizational development and change processes on the lives of vulnerable people”. The activities defined under the development plan were put on hold during the Cyclone Nargis operation between 2008 and 2011, where capacity enhancement was focused on needs of the emergency operation.
In order to work towards the aim of the Strategic Plan 2020 to integrate CEA into all work of the Myanmar Red Cross Society, in 2016 a set of Minimum Standards and a supporting toolkit were developed with support from IFRC. These standards and tools focus on how to build on four foundational pillars of CEA – transparent communication, involvement, feedback mechanisms and community-led monitoring and evaluation – into all MRCS operations.
The Myanmar Red Cross Society (MRCS) recognises that there is a duty of accountability to those we aim to assist, and that by engaging with communities and being accountable to them our programming and activities will be of better quality, have a greater impact, help crisisaffected people recover more quickly, build their resilience and lead to more sustainable development.
Yangon – January 29 2016 - Six months on from the devastating floods that struck Myanmar, around 400,000 people have received emergency assistance and support in their recovery from the Myanmar Red Cross Society and its partners in the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement.
At their peak the floods affected over 9 million people across 12 of Myanmar’s 14 states and regions. The floods temporarily displaced over 1.7 million people and destroyed 15,000 homes as well as more than 840,000 acres of agricultural crops.
Myanmar: Update on Red Cross flood response
In August, torrential rains and the offshore approach of cyclone Komen caused devastating floods and landslides in Myanmar.
The disaster displaced almost 1.7 million people and took the lives of 132, according to the Myanmar government. Half a million houses and 1.15 million acres of farmland were damaged, forcing the replanting of some 495,000 acres of crops, with serious consequences for the livelihoods of thousands of families.
Mandy George, IFRC Myanmar
Myanmar Red Cross Society volunteer U Phyo Thihe, 30, has been working non-stop for over three weeks to help his community in and around Taikkyi Township in Yangon region; an area that has been badly affected by the recent floods that have swept across most of the country since the end of July affected over 1.4 million people.
Adaptation and roll-out of Epidemic Control for Volunteers’ (ECV) Toolkit and Training Manual in Myanmar / Myanmar Red Cross Society / 2015
Yangon (MRCS) – Today, 24 April 2015, the Myanmar Red Cross Society and the Bright foundation are launching a ground breaking partnership that will deliver consistent electricity to a whole village via a solar electric generator. Almost 600 people from Min Ywar Seik Gyi village who have up until now been living with no power will instantly have electricity both day and night for the first time.
On 27 March, Myanmar Red Cross volunteer Moe Kyaw Than passed away 38 days after he had been gravely injured when a Red Cross convoy he was travelling with was attacked in Northern Shan State, Myanmar. The convoy was transporting people displaced by the Kokang armed conflict. 45 year-old Moe Kyaw Than, who had been a dedicated volunteer since 1999, was shot in the abdomen and was immediately treated in Kunlong and subsequently Lashio and Mandalay Public Hospitals where he underwent surgery for an abdominal bullet wound.
Promoting School Based Disaster Risk Reduction is one of the components of the Urban Disaster Risk Reduction Program of the Myanmar Red Cross Society (MRCS). It has been implementing the project since 2012 in two schools of South Dagon Township, Yangon.
“We have learnt about cyclone, flood, earthquake, fire hazards and how to prepare for these hazards. We are very happy to participate, especially in drill exercises, which is very interesting for me” said Maung Paing Soe Khant, a student from Grade 7 of No.12 Basic Education Middle School (BEMS) of the 71st ward.
Over this culvert, around 2000 persons, students, peddlers, workers, and other community members, pass through daily towards their respective destinations. The culvert was constructed by the community with the financial and technical support of Myanmar Red Cross Society (MRCS). Kyun community becomes an island during the rainy season. It is the only access-way they use to go outside their village.
After conducting needs assessments, the Myanmar Red Cross Society (MRCS) has supported the community of the 21st ward with fly-proof latrines in order to reduce the risk of health problems.
In the ward, community members often used open latrines, latrines without walls, which became a breeding grounds for flies. A fly-proof latrine is one that has four walls and a ceiling and preventing flies from reaching into the latrines.
As part of its Urban Disaster Risk Reduction project, the Myanmar Red Cross provided tube-wells attached with an overhead water tanks (with storage capacity of 2500 gallons) to two communities where they did not have access to water sources. The population of each community is about 2500 people.
Severe flooding in recent weeks has affected thousands of people across Myanmar. As floods waters swept through towns and villages, many were forced to leave their homes and personal possessions behind and are now slowly starting to rebuild their lives.
Dr Soe Htet Aung, 26, is originally from Mandalay where he was a GP in a local clinic. For the last two months he has been working for the Red Cross, helping to provide medical treatment to people displaced by violence in Rakhine.
As part of a mobile health team, today he is visiting Ohmdawgyi camp, where dozens of people are already gathered in front of the makeshift clinic.
“In my own clinic I used to provide treatment easily; the patients would arrive one by one and I would assess them. Here there are big crowds of patients and it can be difficult” he said.
The recent news of Cyclone Mahasen marked the beginning of the 2013 Monsoon season in Myanmar. The storm threatened to sweep across Rakhine State, bringing strong winds, heavy rains and potentially life threatening storms to the many vulnerable communities dotted along this stretch of coastline.
“Cyclone Mahasen was the first real test of this year storm season” said U Maung Maung Khin, Head of Disaster Management Division at Myanmar Red Cross Society.
As tropical storm Mahasen continues to make its way over the Bay of Bengal, hundreds of Myanmar Red Cross volunteers are working tirelessly to help evacuate people from vulnerable coastal areas in Rakhine State.
Reports suggest the effects of the storm will be felt in Myanmar and Bangladesh.
“We know from our experience in Cyclone Giri in 2010 that families living in these coastal areas and small islands will bear the brunt of this storm” said U Maung Maung Khin, Head of Division (Disaster Management) from Myanmar Red Cross Society.
Red Cross volunteers are providing emergency support to people affected by the recent outbreaks of communal violence in the Meiktila Township, Mandalay Region. With many hurt and injured during the violence, Red Cross volunteers have been providing first aid services and have also referred 32 patients to Meiktila General Hospital. Red Cross ambulances have also been used to transfer more serious cases to local healthcare facilities.
Myanmar Red Cross volunteers have distributed vital emergency relief supplies to thousands of vulnerable people in Kachin State. The distributions, supported by Danish Red Cross and Singapore Red Cross, included blankets, tarpaulins, mosquito nets, clothes, cooking pots, soap and school kits.
The much needed items were distributed in ten camps in Myit Kyi Na, Phar Khant, Wine Maw and Moe Nyin Townships.