COUNCIL OFBrussels, 22 June 2011
THE EUROPEAN UNION
11947/11 ADD 1
COHAFA 73 PROCIV 87 DEVGEN 202 ACP 153 COAFR 199 COLAT 21 COASI 104 RELEX 691 FIN 442
Secretary-General of the European Commission, signed by Mr Jordi AYET PUIGARNAU, Director
date of receipt: 10 June 2011
to: Mr Pierre de BOISSIEU, Secretary-General of the Council of the European Union
No Cion doc.: SEC(2011) 709 final
Subject: Commission Staff Working Paper accompanying the document Report from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council
Brussels, 10.6.2011 ELECTRONIC VERSION ONLY SEC(2011) 709 final
COMMISSION STAFF WORKING PAPER
Accompanying the document
Report from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council
Annual report on the European Union's Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection Policies
and their Implementation in 2010
1.Policy ......................................................................................................... 3
1.1. Disaster response capacity............................................................................................ 3
1.2. European Voluntary Humanitarian Aid Corps (EVHAC) ........................................... 4
1.3. Mid-term review of Consensus action plan.................................................................. 4
1.4. Food assistance and Food Aid Convention .................................................................. 5
1.5. Good Humanitarian Donorship .................................................................................... 5
1.6. Thematic policies ......................................................................................................... 6
1.7. Aid effectiveness ........................................................................................................ 10
1.8. Civil protection policy................................................................................................ 12
2.Interinstitutional relations and cooperation with other donors and partners ...................................................................................................12
2.1. Council Working Group on Humanitarian Aid and Food Aid (COHAFA)............... 12
2.2. Council Working Group on Civil Protection (PROCIV) ........................................... 13
2.3. Cooperation with other EU institutions, donors and partners .................................... 13
3.Implementation of humanitarian aid and civil protection in 2010 ......15
3.1. A needs-based approach ............................................................................................. 15
3.2. Top 10 humanitarian crises in terms of funding allocations ...................................... 16
3.3. Africa.......................................................................................................................... 16
3.4. Middle East and Mediterranean.................................................................................. 32
3.5. Caucasus ..................................................................................................................... 35
3.6. Asia............................................................................................................................. 36
3.7. Latin America, the Caribbean and the Pacific............................................................ 50
3.8. Worldwide .................................................................................................................. 56
3.9. Disaster preparedness activities, including DIPECHO .............................................. 57
3.10. Linking relief, rehabilitation and development (LRRD)............................................ 59
3.11. Civil protection........................................................................................................... 62
3.12. Case studies on launching humanitarian aid and civil protection .............................. 66
The year 2010 was marked by the creation of a new portfolio in the Commission specifically devoted to international cooperation, humanitarian aid and crisis response and of a new Directorate-General for Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection under the responsibility of Commissioner Kristalina Georgieva. This decision was taken against the background of the increasing number, frequency and intensity of natural disasters and the disastrous effects of armed conflicts on civilians. While humanitarian aid brings a budget of about 800 million, strong expertise and an international network of field-based experts to the portfolio, civil protection can mobilise Member States' professional and specialised assets in the event of an emergency either within or outside the EU. The objective of creating this new portfolio was to exploit synergies between the two instruments, maximise complementarity and reinforce the crisis response capacity and the coherence of EU response operations.
Throughout 2010, the Directorate-General for Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection (DG ECHO) devoted considerable efforts to making this merger a success. The results can be considered to be positive: a stronger DG, better equipped to respond to crises, has been created (as was demonstrated in the case of the Pakistan floods, where both instruments were used together). These achievements will be further strengthened and consolidated in 2011.
1.1. Disaster response capacity
A Communication to strengthen the EU's disaster response capacity was adopted on
1.The underlying idea is that Europe needs to move away from an ad hoc response
to one which is pre-planned, predictable and immediate. At present, the deployment of EU civil protection assets is based on voluntary offers of assistance but, in situations where every hour counts, Europe needs a system that can guarantee that key assets can be mobilised swiftly and deployed instantly.
In order to respond to the above-mentioned challenges, the Communication proposes developing a European Emergency Response Capacity (comprising, inter alia, reference scenarios, mapping of Member States' civil protection assets, transportation arrangements and a voluntary pool of Member States' resources on standby for participation in a European response) and a new Emergency Response Centre. The latter will serve as a platform to provide a more effective EU response whenever and wherever a disaster strikes. It will collect real-time information on disasters, monitor hazards, prepare scenarios for different types of disasters, work with Member States to map available assets and coordinate the EU's disaster response efforts. It will also have direct links with civil protection and humanitarian aid authorities in Member States, allowing it to process all in-kind assistance and ensuring a fully joined-up approach to disaster response.
1.2. European Voluntary Humanitarian Aid Corps (EVHAC)
The Lisbon Treaty provides for the establishment of a European Voluntary Humanitarian Aid Corps (EVHAC).
The first stocktaking and review phase that took place in 2010 allowed the Commission to obtain a broad overview of the current situation of volunteering. All relevant stakeholders were consulted through a range of bilateral meetings, surveys, interviews and a dedicated conference on 30 September. Despite a good number of existing volunteering schemes, some gaps were identified, including: (i) identification and selection of volunteers; (ii) training (including the development of common standards, good practices and modules); (iii) deployment of volunteers in the right place and at the right time.
Alongside needs, some conditions for the EVHAC to make a positive contribution to humanitarian aid operations have also been identified: (a) avoiding duplication by supporting/complementing
existing voluntary organisations; (b) considering the
professionalisation of the humanitarian sector; (c) taking into account security concerns (mainly for inexperienced volunteers); (d) supporting the development of local capacities/volunteering; (e) avoiding diversion of operational humanitarian aid budgets.
A Commission Communication to the European Parliament and the Council presenting the current situation of volunteering and the options to be further analysed was adopted on
A 1 million budget has been allocated for a preparatory action in 2011. This will support the Commission in the process leading up to the establishment of a European Voluntary Humanitarian Aid Corps through further consultation (conferences, workshops) and through the implementation of pilot actions aimed at selecting, training and deploying EU volunteers.
1.3. Mid-term review of Consensus action plan
In 2010, the Commission continued to ensure that the European Consensus principles and commitments are pursued throughout the EU's humanitarian aid approach -- in both policy development and operational response.
The outcome of this review was outlined in a Commission Communication3 on the mid-term
review of the European Consensus on Humanitarian Aid Action Plan -- implementing effective, principled EU humanitarian action, adopted on 8 December together with a report on implementation progress so far, set out in the accompanying Commission Staff Working Document
1.4. Food assistance and Food Aid Convention
Following an extensive consultation process with stakeholders, the Commission adopted its Humanitarian Food Assistance Policy
5, which was subsequently endorsed by Member
States in Council Conclusions. The main aim is to provide food assistance to the most vulnerable crisis-affected people in the most efficient and effective way. To this end, the policy promotes the best mix of assistance tools to deliver the most appropriate response in a given humanitarian context. The distribution of food items may be the best response to a crisis where food is not available in sufficient quantities. However, in many situations the problem is rather the vulnerable people's access to safe and nutritious food. In such cases, the most efficient response includes the provision of cash and vouchers to beneficiaries, which also helps to uphold their dignity and may have a positive impact on the local market. In this vein, cash-based assistance was implemented for instance after the massive natural disasters in Haiti and Pakistan that occurred in 2010.
Global interest in addressing malnutrition increased in 2010, recognizing that the problem has to be tackled in a comprehensive manner, from both the humanitarian and development angles, and applying a multi-sectoral approach (health, food security, water and sanitation...).
DG ECHO prepared an Interim Position Paper on Nutrition and is further developing its nutrition policy, at the same time maintaining close co-operation with more development- oriented Commission services for instance contributing to the DG DEVCO led Reference Document "Addressing Under-nutrition in External Assistance". DG ECHO addressed acute malnutrition through comprehensive action for instance in Niger, thus helping to avert a new major nutrition crisis.
In 2010, on behalf of the European Union, DG ECHO took part in several informal meetings of the Members of the Food Aid Committee on the renegotiation of the Food Aid Convention 1999 (FAC). In December 2010, FAC Members collectively agreed to start the formal renegotiation process in which DG ECHO negotiates on behalf of the European Union. The aim is to turn the Food Aid Convention into a meaningful instrument that will facilitate the provision of effective, appropriate and adequate food assistance responses, consistent with the European humanitarian food assistance policy and best practices.
donors. On the latter, the EU led an exchange on the European Consensus on Humanitarian Aid and on the DG ECHO partnership approach and budget allocation procedures, before successfully handing over facilitation of the GHD newcomers sessions (renamed SHARE) to Estonia. Accountability, monitoring and evaluation in humanitarian action were the focus of the annual high-level meeting of GHD, and the EU was invited to share its considerable experience in this area. Brazil became the 37th member of GHD in 2010.
In fulfilment of a commitment made under the European Consensus Action Plan, considerable progress was made by the Commission (DG ECHO) toward finalising a statement of implementation on the 23 GHD principles and good practices, which was transmitted to GHD donor colleagues for an opportunity to review before finalisation.
1.6. Thematic policies
1.6.1. Disaster risk reduction (DRR)
The Commission has been pursuing an integrated approach to disaster risk reduction both within the EU and in relations with developing countries (see Section 3.11). The political framework for EU policy in this field was set by two Communications adopted as a package
in February 2009
7 -- one covering EU Member States and the other developing countries,
both endorsed by Council Conclusions.
In relation to the Communication on the EU strategy for Supporting DRR in developing countries the Council welcomed the Implementation Plan prepared by a EU Steering Group (Composed of Member States and the Commission) for the period 2011 2014. This Plan foresees application of aid effectiveness principles in DRR, including increased coordination and cooperation between humanitarian and development actors within and outside the EU.
Exploiting the synergies between internal and external action on issues such as improving the knowledge base, risk assessment or encouraging financing of disaster risk reduction is a key part of this approach. The importance of disaster preparedness is clearly recognised in DG ECHO's mandate and in the European Consensus for Humanitarian Aid adopted in 2007. In 1996, the Commission launched a specific programme devoted to disaster preparedness, `DIPECHO'. The programme relies on community-based pilot projects in disaster-prone regions of the world, and has proven extremely successful, not least because in addition to its impact on DRR it provides DG ECHO with a partner base in often remote areas that can be activated rapidly once disaster strikes.
Throughout 2010, DG ECHO policy work on disaster risk reduction (DRR) and climate change adaptation (CCA) continued.
In the framework of the EU policy and strategy in this field (DRR in developing countries) and of the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA) DG ECHO has finalised its own coherent strategic approach to DRR and has started drafting guidelines for its implementation.
In 2010, the Commission, through DG ECHO, invested increased resources in DRR activities (disaster preparedness projects such as DIPECHO as well as other DRR activities such as drought and epidemic preparedness, DRR capacity building, etc.) aimed at helping communities and relevant institutions to prepare for, and reduce, the impact of natural disasters as well as strengthening the coping capacities at all levels in disaster-prone regions.
In total, DIPECHO action plans and DRR activities integrated into the humanitarian response (i.e. the earthquake in Haiti, floods in Pakistan, droughts in the Greater Horn of Africa, the Sahel region, Bolivia, Djibouti; epidemics in Congo, Haiti, Malawi, Zimbabwe, etc.) reached more than 35 million beneficiaries in regions prone to natural disasters with funding of about
The Commission also promoted knowledge about climate change adaptation -- of which DRR is one of the main components -- at national, regional and local level, further integrated DRR elements into the emergency response (applying the principle of building back better) and strengthened its activity in advocacy, coordination, capacity building and dissemination
of good practices.
The reduction of vulnerability and building resilience to extreme events has become a priority in the immediate and short term. This prioritisation helps to avoid humanitarian and economic losses, as well as secure development gains and provide a more sustainable basis for other adaptation action over the long term.
The Commission also completed its internal assessment on the humanitarian impact of climate change, continued its reflection on the role and approach of humanitarian actors in the field of CCA, and started to study how to develop synergies between disaster risk reduction and adaptation to climate change in its operations.
This changing political and institutional environment led the Commission to consider ways and means for early and regular interaction and coordination in order to preserve vital specificities of humanitarian action, while allowing more coherent responses when appropriate. Thus outreach, interaction and coordination with key civilian, military and political actors, including from the newly created crisis management structures of the EEAS, became increasingly important.
In 2010, increased attention to the above-mentioned issues led the Commission to create a full-time position to follow coordination policy issues with other actors responding to crises, with special emphasis on civil-military coordination. The Commission also adopted a Communication on EU disaster response capacity
10 which touches on questions of civil-
military relations, including compliance with the UN Guidelines on the use of Military and
Civil Defence Assets in international disaster relief (Oslo Guidelines), endorsed by the EU inter alia in the European Consensus on Humanitarian Aid.
Regarding operational implementation of the above approach during the devastating floods affecting Pakistan, there was smooth cooperation between the Commission and the EU Movement Planning Cell of the EU Military Staff. The arrangements for access to Member States' military assets to support EU disaster response
11 were successfully tested and the EU
Movement Planning Cell contributed to the EU Air Bridge by providing three military chartered planes.
Besides the above, work was taken forward in the relevant working groups of the exercise on `civil-military synergies in capability development' under the Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP). The Commission also continued to contribute to enhancing civil-military coordination by funding the activities of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) in the civil-military coordination field. Activities included training events, large-scale multilateral military exercises to disseminate the existing UN
Civil-Military Coordination Guidelines (`MCDA
12 Guidelines' on the use of military and civil
humanitarian principles. It also commits the EU to strongly and consistently advocating compliance with international law, including IHL, human rights law and refugee law.
Even if compliance with IHL is above all a Member State responsibility, the Commission/DG ECHO is engaged in the promotion of IHL and the defence of humanitarian principles and humanitarian space through adopting an operational case-by-case approach and financing a number of related geographic and thematic actions, focusing on those parts of IHL where it has most potential added value and leverage, e.g. humanitarian space, access, protection of civilians/humanitarian workers.
Finally, DG ECHO organised an awareness-raising campaign on the occasion of World Humanitarian Day on 19 August 2010, covering IHL and other related issues. The campaign mainly focused on the security of aid workers, who are increasingly victims of incidents. In 2009 alone, 276 aid workers were kidnapped, wounded or killed
Health was the second sector of activity (13.4 %) after food aid in 2010, accounting for around a sixth of DG ECHO's total operational expenditure, in line with the fact that excess mortality and morbidity are central criteria for any type of humanitarian assistance.
The health experts in DG ECHO participated in the two consultation rounds aimed at producing a new SPHERE Handbook
14 -- Humanitarian Charter and Minimum Standards for
Disaster Response, to be published in 2011, updating the widely used 2004 edition.
With key partners, DG ECHO health experts monitored implementation of the humanitarian reform in the health sector in Chad, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Zimbabwe, and in addition to the planned monitoring missions, cluster deployments in Haiti and Pakistan were closely followed.
DG ECHO is systematically part of the Global Health Cluster strategic working group (led by the WHO
At the annual Anopheles working group meeting in September, a list of indicators measuring the effectiveness of DG ECHO-funded medical programmes was agreed. Further work is ongoing to measure the efficiency of operations through the costs observed per result study (unit costs). On the technical development side, a technical issues paper on malaria prevention advocating the use of long-lasting insecticide-treated bed nets was finalised.
These consultations helped the Commission to identify a number of key matters to be further discussed in the forthcoming policy document. It also showed the need to better track lessons learnt from its own programmes in order to produce a strong gender policy illustrated with meaningful case studies. In 2010, the Commission therefore developed an issues paper on the gender dimension of humanitarian aid with an attached questionnaire, to explore the views and experience of the Commission's humanitarian aid staff in approaching and dealing with gender issues. Consultations on the issues paper are to take place in early 2011.
Work was also started on the issue of sexual exploitation and abuse with a view to reinforcing the Commission's strategies and involvement in the global fight against such crimes in humanitarian settings.
Internal work and information sharing on gender issues was likewise strengthened. DG ECHO reinforced its gender working group, organised sessions on sexual and gender-based violence and gender integration in two of its regional seminars, and held information lunch sessions for its Brussels-based staff on sexual exploitation and abuse and on reproductive health in humanitarian crises.
Finally, the Commission/DG ECHO contributed to the development of an Action Plan on Gender Equality and Women's Empowerment in Development
16 to implement the
comprehensive approach to UN Security Council Resolutions 1325 and 1820 on Women, Peace and Security, not least through support for the development of indicators to measure progress (adopted by the Council in July) and for the development of the external aid part of the new Commission's strategy for gender equality
17 (adopted in September).
1.7. Aid effectiveness
1.7.1. Needs assessment
The Commission continued to actively engage in debates on setting up better coordinated, more coherent common needs assessment. The Commission took part in the work of the UN IASC Needs Assessment Task Force (NATF) and contributed to a number of concrete activities, e.g. roll-out of the `humanitarian dashboard' for needs assessments. The EU updated the Member States on the Common Methodological Framework for Needs Assessment in the relevant Council Working Group (COHAFA meeting on 12 February). In view of the leading role DG ECHO is playing in needs assessment, in particular promoting the joint/common needs assessment approach being developed by the UN, an Initial Needs Assessment Checklist (INAC) was drawn up for the use of field and HQ staff. The INAC tries to fill an existing gap: the collection of data during the first few days after a sudden-onset crisis (but in principle no later than the first three days). The tool also includes inputs from the EU civil protection analysis, a first result of the integration of the civil protection units within DG ECHO's overall needs assessment operational activities.
severe, protracted humanitarian crisis situations where affected populations are receiving no or not enough international aid) were published and presented to COHAFA on 7 October.
1.7.2. Capacity building
The overall rationale is that capacity building investments in the global humanitarian system lead to more rapid and more cost-effective humanitarian responses, allowing better and broader humanitarian coverage.
The Commission/DG ECHO's commitment to engage in the capacity building approach was given in the European Consensus on Humanitarian Aid. In the Consensus the Member States and the Commission's partners agreed that supporting the development of the collective global capacity to respond to humanitarian crises is one of the fundamental tenets of the EU approach
18.Further, the Action Plan following the EU Consensus on Humanitarian Aid
commits the EU to `... explore how to enhance support to capacity building, including in the cluster approach and provisions for reinforcing local capacity ... and to promote a multi- donor approach to capacity building'
19.Also, through the endorsement of the Good
Humanitarian Donorship Principle, DG ECHO agreed to `allocate funding to strengthen capacities for response'
For 2010 and 2011, 15 million is available for funding humanitarian capacity building. This
is primarily aimed at:
humanitarian coordination, supporting the overall humanitarian coordination structures and
specific cluster coordination structures, including support in the increasingly important area of civil-military coordination through UNOCHA;
continued support to ensure more consistent use of joint/common needs assessments;
logistics support, mainly through the UN World Food Programme (WFP), for building up
1.8. Civil protection policy
In 2010 the European Civil Protection Mechanism was transferred to DG ECHO and merged with humanitarian aid in an attempt to exploit synergies and enhance the coherence of EU response operations. Options to further strengthen the EU's disaster response capacity were also assessed and culminated in the adoption of a Communication on 26 October 2010
Council Conclusions on 14 December 2010.
In parallel to reinforcing the EU's response to disasters, DG ECHO continued to work in the fields of prevention and preparedness. Emphasis was placed on preventive measures (the costs of prevention are always considerably lower than those linked to remediation) and on the development of training courses and exercises. Lessons learnt meetings were organised for the numerous disasters that occurred in 2010.
The Commission/DG ECHO is also implementing a series of activities to give effect to the EU framework on the prevention of disasters contained in the Communication adopted in February 2009. In this context the Commission issued a guidance paper on national risk assessment and mapping for disaster management, which was developed in close cooperation with national authorities. The Commission is doing its utmost to improve its knowledge base on disasters and encourage effective and greater investment in disaster prevention.
2.INTERINSTITUTIONAL RELATIONS AND COOPERATION WITH OTHER DONORS AND
2.1. Council Working Group on Humanitarian Aid and Food Aid (COHAFA)
The work of COHAFA, successfully launched under the Czech Presidency at the start of 2009, continued under the Spanish and Belgian Presidencies in 2010. Having a dedicated forum for regular policy exchange among Member States and Commission experts represents a qualitative leap in the development of a more coherent and coordinated EU approach to humanitarian policy and action.
Throughout the year, the working group, which brings together representatives from EU capitals, met 13 times, one of which exclusively in response to a sudden-onset emergency (Pakistan in August). The incoming EU Presidencies, in cooperation with the Commission, established a work plan covering specific humanitarian crises (e.g. Haiti, Pakistan, the Gaza war, Sudan/Darfur, DR Congo, Colombia -- to name but a few), sectoral topics (e.g. the Food Aid Convention, WFP, Mid-term review of the Consensus on Humanitarian Aid Action Plan, European Voluntary Humanitarian Aid Corps), and coordination on specific issues (e.g. UN needs assessment work, ECOSOC
conclusions were adopted). Discussions took place within COHAFA on the possible extension/renewal of the Food Aid Convention, with the Commission obtaining a mandate in November 2010 to renegotiate the Convention on behalf of the EU (see Section 1.4).
On a strategic level, COHAFA has allowed the European Union to increase the coherence of the Commission's and Member States' humanitarian aid activities: there is an annual exchange on individual humanitarian aid policies and budgets (this took place in several stages at the beginning of 2010), policies formulated by the Commission are often referred to or reproduced by Member States, individual EU donor activities in specific crises are better coordinated and EU positions on specific issues are discussed ahead of international meetings.
On a day-to-day basis, the work of the group was facilitated by the Commission's initiative to distribute widely its situation reports on specific humanitarian crises, which have quickly become a major source of information for a wide audience of stakeholders inside and outside Europe.
Under the Belgian Presidency COHAFA undertook to review its mandate, which was considered to provide a good basis for the future work of the group. However, in the course of this review it was also felt that COHAFA should adopt new working methods with a view to improving the visibility, outputs, results and impact of its work even further.
2.2. Council Working Group on Civil Protection (PROCIV)
PROCIV is the Council working group that deals with civil protection policy for the Justice and Home Affairs Council. In 2010 it met nine times. Debates covered the full range of civil protection policy and operational issues: response, preparedness and prevention, including discussions on the major disasters that occurred in 2010.
A specific focus of the working group was discussing and agreeing on five sets of Council conclusions that were subsequently adopted as `I'/`A' items by the Council. These Conclusions call on Member States and the Commission to step up existing actions and also to take new measures to strengthen disaster management in the EU.
with the members of the DEVE Committee, in particular to raise awareness of and interest in humanitarian issues, and assisted Parliament staff in organising several field missions. Several meetings with the new Chair of the DEVE Committee (Ms Eva Joly) and the new standing Humanitarian Rapporteur (Ms Michele Striffler) were held to discuss humanitarian policy and operational issues. DG ECHO was also in close contact with the DEVE and ENVI Committees on matters related to disaster response.
Commissioner Georgieva regularly attended EP Committees (DEVE and ENVI) to conduct the `structured dialogue' with the European Parliament in the areas of her portfolio. These occasions were used to brief Parliament about current and future policy initiatives and priorities, in the field of both humanitarian aid and civil protection, and to inform Parliament about the Commission's response to specific crises.
Throughout the year Commissioner Georgieva visited a number of EU capitals to meet her counterparts in the field of humanitarian aid and civil protection. The purpose of these visits was to present her newly created portfolio and to exchange views on her policy priorities and issues of concern to Member States.
Commissioner Georgieva regularly attended meetings of the Foreign and General Affairs Councils for discussions within her portfolio either on specific crises or on policy initiatives such as a stronger European disaster response.
The Commissioner also undertook a number of field missions both within and outside Europe (e.g. Hungary (red sludge accident) and Haiti).
Throughout the year, DG ECHO and Commissioner Georgieva also maintained regular contact with relevant international organisations, in particular the UN and the Red Cross Movement, on policy development and operational issues. Regular meetings were also held in Brussels with key partners. Special emphasis was placed on close cooperation with the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator, Mr John Holmes, and his successor, Mrs Valerie Amos.
DG ECHO took part in UN and Red Cross Movement related meetings and processes, mainly in New York, Geneva and Rome, in close liaison with the relevant EU Delegations. Through active participation in the OCHA and ICRC Donor Support Groups, and through its permanent observer status at WFP Executive Board meetings and in the UNHCR's Executive Committee, DG ECHO provided inputs to strategic decision making and guidance at these organisations.
3.IMPLEMENTATION OF HUMANITARIAN AID AND CIVIL PROTECTION IN 2010
3.1. A needs-based approach
The EU provides assistance to populations with the greatest humanitarian needs, irrespective of origin, religion or political creed.
For a number of years, ECHO has been using a two-pronged approach to identify countries whose humanitarian needs should be given high priority. The first approach is the needs evaluation undertaken in the field by experts and geographical units. In addition to the immediate reports on crisis areas, analyses are carried out to provide information on specific needs. At the same time, a comparative analysis is conducted to identify those countries which may require humanitarian assistance. This analysis has two dimensions:
the Global Needs Assessment28, based on national indicators, classes more than 140
countries according to the occurrence of a recent crisis (natural disaster or conflict, including the weight of displaced people or refugees on the population) and the degree of vulnerability of the population, incorporating various indicators (e.g. human development index, mortality of children under five);
the Forgotten Crisis Assessment attempts to identify serious humanitarian crises where the
people affected do not receive sufficient international aid and/or media coverage.
These are important tools for ensuring coherence in allocating resources among countries according to their needs, independently of any type of pressure.
Using this method, the Commission identified 39 countries or territories in crisis in 2010. Out of these, 16 were classed as `extremely vulnerable': 13 were in sub-Saharan Africa (including Chad, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan, Uganda and Zimbabwe). 58 % of the initial geographical budget was allocated to the 16 most vulnerable countries.
Approximately 17 % of the geographical budget allocation was channelled to 12 `forgotten crisis' situations in 2010
the Sahrawi refugees in Algeria;
the populations affected by regional conflicts in India (Kashmir, north-east India, Naxalite
the populations affected by the internal armed conflict in the Central African Republic;
the Somali refugee crisis in Kenya;
the Mindanao crisis in the Philippines;
the Bhutanese refugees in Nepal;
the crisis in the Sahel region (mainly Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger),
which is suffering from a continuing series of external shocks (poor rains, political instability, high food prices, epidemics, etc.), aggravating an already fragile situation but not attracting the attention of the media.
3.2. Top 10 humanitarian crises in terms of funding allocations
EU humanitarian funding in 2010 for the top ten recipients was 674 million, or 68 % of the total operational budget resources allocated to countries and regions. Out of the top 10 amount, 47 % was earmarked for countries in Africa.
The main region funded was Sudan, Chad and Central Africa, which received 54 % of the amount allocated to Africa.
Funding in response to natural disasters was made available for the drought in Sahel, the floods in Burkina Faso and a polio epidemic in the Republic of the Congo.
DG ECHO implemented drought preparedness activities in the Greater Horn of Africa and funded ECHO Flight, a service for humanitarian operators in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Republic of the Congo and Kenya.
3.3.1. Sudan and Chad, Central Africa
The region of Sudan, Chad and Central Africa has by far the largest concentration of humanitarian activities in the world. This is partly a reflection of the sheer scale of need: for example, millions of people in Sudan are affected by conflict, displacement and natural disasters. It is also an indication of the complexity and recurrent nature of crises in these countries. Many of the crises cut across national boundaries, for example, the Darfur-Chad dynamic and the Lord's Resistance Army's attacks in South Sudan, the Central African Republic and north-eastern DRC. Many crises occur in situations where the State's presence and basic facilities are very weak, or even non-existent.
Conflict is the major factor creating humanitarian crises in this region, displacing people from their homes, preventing them from enjoying a stable lifestyle and from earning their livelihoods and denying them access to basic services. But conflict also hinders the effectiveness of the humanitarian response. Organisations are frequently unable to work, or are prevented from working to capacity. On top of this, there is often administrative interference from central and local authorities who are suspicious of independent humanitarian aid, and wanting to exercise a degree of control over it.
All this takes place against a background of extremely weak infrastructure, which creates serious logistical challenges for humanitarian agencies, and appalling poverty. Four of the countries in the region (Central African Republic, Chad, Burundi, DR Congo) figure in the bottom 10 of the UN's Human Development Index
Table - Breakdown of funding (commitments) for Sudan & Chad and Central Africa
Humanitarian aidFood AidEDFTotal
Sudan 75 000 00056 000 000131 000 000
Chad (East & South)18 000 00010 000 00028 000 000
Chad (Sahel)5 000 0005 000 00010 000 000
Total Sudan & Chad93 000 00071 000 0005 000 000169 000 000
Burundi (+refugees in Tanzania)10 000 0005 000 00015 000 000
Cameroon (North - Sahel)2 000 0002 000 000
Central African Republic5 000 0002 800 0007 800 000
Congo Brazzaville 1 000 0003 500 0004 500 000
D.R. Congo30 000 00015 000 0001 950 00046 950 000
Echo-Flight8 500 0008 500 000
Total Cental Africa54 500 00022 000 0008 250 00084 750 000
In 2010 DG ECHO's intervention in Sudan remained one of its largest -- supporting the delivery of humanitarian aid to 6 million IDPs, refugees, returnees, host communities and nomads across Sudan. In Darfur, 1.9 million people remain displaced in camps; 2 million are affected by conflict; and there are 40 000 refugees from Chad. During 2010 the number of affected people increased, with intertribal clashes and clashes between rebels and government forces displacing a further 300 000 people. In South Sudan the humanitarian situation remained critical, with 2 million people in need of food assistance. During the year 900 people were killed and 215 000 displaced due to tribal clashes and attacks by the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA). Seasonal flooding affected 140 000 people and malnutrition remained a major concern, with acute malnutrition affecting 50 000 children. In the 10 weeks prior to the referendum of 9 January 2011 close to 150 000 people returned to South Sudan.
All are dependent on some form of humanitarian assistance to cover basic needs. With the potential for instability as a result of the referendum process, DG ECHO proactively supported the contingency efforts of its partners by allocating additional funds for the procurement, transport and pre-positioning of essential humanitarian commodities including food.
Through its support for common services such as air transport, coordination, logistic services and security assessments, DG ECHO helped to ensure a safer environment for effective and principled delivery of humanitarian aid. The worrying developments in Darfur led DG ECHO to scale up advocacy, information and communication activities.
Out of the 131 million allocated to Sudan, general food distributions represented the largest single component in terms of both overall funding (42.7 %) and coverage, with 3.8 million beneficiaries in Darfur and 2.5 million in South Sudan. Life-saving activities (43.9 %) were supported in the sectors of health, water, sanitation and hygiene, shelter, non-food items and nutrition. Substantial support was given to EP&R (6.8 %) and common services (6.8 %). Overall DG ECHO maintained a flexible approach to allow an immediate response to new emergencies on the basis of identified needs.
Commissioner Kristalina Georgieva undertook a 4-day mission to Sudan in June 2010, visiting Khartoum, Darfur-Nyala and Juba. This first mission to a protracted conflcit area gave added impetus to a number of ongoing issues, which she subsequently followed up, including the development of civil-military relationships, the problems of shrinking humanitarian space and more particularly access and insecurity, contingency planning and the transition from humanitarian to development assistance.
In 2010 Chad faced many humanitarian challenges: the protracted crisis in Eastern and Southern Chad affected 500 000 vulnerable people, including 255 000 Sudanese refugees, 64 000 Central African Republic refugees, 171 000 IDPs and their host populations; the food and nutrition crisis in the Sahel belt affected 1.6 million people and floods and a cholera epidemic hit 150 000 and 6 300 people respectively.
mechanisms. Operations mainly focused on nutrition, health (in relation to malnutrition) and food security.
At country-wide level the health Early Warning System (EWARS) allowed timely warning and response to the meningitis, measles and cholera epidemics that occurred in 2010.
Burundi and Tanzania
In 2010 the Commission allocated a total budget of 15 million to Tanzania and Burundi. DG ECHO's intervention in Tanzania assisted the 37 000 Burundian and 61 000 Congolese refugees in the North-West along the Burundian border, while in Burundi DG ECHO focused mainly on the 30 000 Congolese refugees and on specific vulnerable groups. In view of the close links between the two countries in terms of humanitarian needs, DG ECHO now administers field operations in both countries from Bujumbura.
The principal objective was to limit mortality and morbidity rates in the target population and to support the resettlement and stabilisation process. Throughout 2010 repatriation of refugees was extremely low and the refugee population remained at much the same level. The camp populations in both Burundi and Tanzania are almost entirely dependent on external assistance and need integrated humanitarian aid (food, water and sanitation, healthcare, nutrition, shelter, protection). Returnees to Burundi require, during and immediately after the repatriation process, the same level of assistance, plus transport facilities. DG ECHO provided integrated assistance to 130 000 refugees. In Burundi specific vulnerable groups such as children under five, pregnant and lactating mothers, returnees, unaccompanied minors, the disabled and the elderly were assisted through water and sanitation, health, nutrition and food security actions. Around 20 000 severely malnourished children under five and 750 000 vulnerable people were helped.
stabilisation and resettlement. However, the humanitarian response in the CAR is hampered by security constraints and serious logistical problems, which limit access to the needs areas.
In response to the forgotten crisis, DG ECHO's approach was sufficiently flexible to respond immediately to the evolving situation and to maintain multi-sectoral assistance to 100 000 IDPs and returnees, 20 000 refugees, 110 000 people in the three main urban centres in the South-East affected by the LRA attacks and several hundred thousand of the vulnerable host population, with a total budget of 7.8 million. DG ECHO has enhanced access by encouraging the presence of humanitarian agencies in the most critical areas, through supporting humanitarian logistics services and promoting coordination.
Republic of the Congo
The influx of more than 100 000 refugees from Equateur Province in the DRC at the end of 2009 destabilised the already fragile humanitarian situation in La Likouala Province in the North-East of the Republic of the Congo. The pressure on the local populations justified an urgent intervention to avoid a serious deterioration of the humanitarian situation. Water and sanitation projects, food distribution and coordination were urgently needed. Logistics remains the main problem in accessing the area, since the refugees are spread along more than 500 km of the Ubangui river. Delivering humanitarian aid in time was therefore a challenge that many humanitarian actors faced in the early months of the intervention.
Many of the refugees were hosted by the local population, but around 40 % are developing their own coping mechanism in order to survive in their new environment, while still maintaining strong links with their former home areas on the other side of the river in the DRC.
Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC)
The DRC is still far from returning to complete peace and stability. Despite some improvements in the humanitarian situation in the East, mostly in parts of North Kivu and Province Orientale, more than one million IDPs are still unable to return home and regain self-sufficiency.
In a country which is among the world's neediest, DG ECHO's response strategy ( 46.95 million) focused on the problematic surrounding IDPs in conflict situations and on protection- related issues. 65 % of DG ECHO funding was allocated to the North-East, North and South Kivu and Haut and Bas Uele. Across the country as a whole, DG ECHO assisted more than one million beneficiaries in 2010 through the provision of multi-sectoral humanitarian aid and food assistance. The issue of sexual violence continued to be integrated within all health programmes and some more specialised projects.
The working environment in the DRC is extremely difficult: logistics are a constant challenge due to the lack of basic infrastructure. Security in the zones where DG ECHO operates has also become more and more problematic, with an ever-increasing number of restricted areas and an increase in security incidents involving humanitarian workers.
DG ECHO has reinforced the coordination of humanitarian aid by supporting the role of OCHA and the cluster system in the DRC and the Good Humanitarian Donorship (GHD) group. DG ECHO is fully involved in the annual process led by the UN Humanitarian Coordinator to formulate humanitarian strategy and a new Humanitarian Action Plan. The GHD initiative in the DRC continues to foster active cooperation among donors. It is extremely relevant, in view of the growing number of funding instruments and programmes in place in the Eastern part of the country, including those being implemented at the initiative of the Congolese authorities. DG ECHO plays an active part in this process.
In a number of countries there is no safe and reliable means of transport between the supply and personnel entry points and the main humanitarian destinations because of logistical and security-related access problems. Overland travel is dangerous and time consuming, or even impossible. DG ECHO therefore continued to implement a flight service focusing on Central Africa (the DRC and neighbouring areas) and Kenya, with a view to facilitating the implementation of humanitarian and post-emergency development projects in difficult areas. The ECHO Flight operation provided an efficient, reliable and safe service to enable secure and accountable implementation of humanitarian projects in remote, otherwise inaccessible, regions.
3.3.2. Horn of Africa
In 2010, conflicts and displacement combined with drought exacerbated humanitarian and food needs. Epidemics (Ethiopia, Uganda) also contributed to increased vulnerability of people.
The Commission allocated 96 million to respond to these crises affecting the region, or 20 %
of the total allocation to Africa.
Table - Breakdown of funding (commitments) for the Horn of Africa
Humanitarian aidFood AidTotal
Djibouti2 000 0002 000 000
Ethiopia5 000 00010 000 00015 000 000
Kenya13 000 0005 000 00018 000 000
Somalia30 000 0005 000 00035 000 000
Uganda4 000 0002 000 0006 000 000
DRR Horn of Africa *20 000 00020 000 000
TOTAL72 000 00024 000 00096 000 000
*The Disaster Risk Reduction Programme in the Horn of Africa relates to humanitarian aid in Djibouti ( 0.6 million), Ethiopia ( 8.9 million), Kenya ( 6.3 million), Somalia ( 0.7 million) and Uganda ( 3.5 million).
In January FEWSNET (the Famine Early Warning System Network) launched a food security alert highlighting the deterioration of the situation due to a drop in cash transfers and the continuing low rainfall predictions. As pastoralists had already lost 50-70 percent of their livestock in late 2008 due to drought and because recovery was so slow, the ability of households to absorb further livestock losses was very limited. A rapid nutritional assessment using the Middle Upper Arm Circumference (MUAC) method, carried out as part of the inter- agency assessment in March, found a rate of 20 % of children with a MUAC below 125 mm and 6 % of children with a MUAC of 115 mm, indicating a potentially very critical nutritional situation.
The year 2010 started with heightened humanitarian needs owing to the spillover effects of the 2008 and 2009 drought, but favourable rainfall conditions later in the year led to an improved food security situation in most parts of the country. As a consequence, Ethiopia reached almost 20 million tonnes of agricultural production in 2010, an increase of 10 % on the previous year. Subsequently, a steady reduction in the number of people in need of food assistance was reported. According to the Humanitarian Requirement Document jointly released in January by the Ethiopian government and humanitarian organisations, there were 5.2 million beneficiaries in the country. This figure was revised in November to 2.3 million beneficiaries. However, approximately 410 000 hectares of wheat land was affected by yellow rust, causing pockets of food insecurity. In addition, the La Niña climatic event, which affected the Greater Horn of Africa in the last quarter of the year, had and is still having a negative effect in the pastoral communities of southern Ethiopia. Floods affected a large part of Ethiopia and were one of the major humanitarian concerns in 2010. In the Amhara region alone reports indicated that over 400 000 people were affected and 17 000 displaced from several areas. By contrast, epidemics of acute diarrhoea were substantially reduced compared
The Commission allocated 15 million to Ethiopia in 2010, and it is estimated that overall about 2.8 million people benefited from the various operations supported by DG ECHO in the country.
Under the Global Plan, the Humanitarian Aid budget aimed to improve the humanitarian situation of the disasters-affected population through the provision of multi-sector assistance. The food aid budget was more focused on providing appropriate and adequate humanitarian food assistance, including food aid, nutritional support and short-term food security and livelihood support. The Regional Drought Decision aimed to alleviate the impact of drought (current drought as well as frequent drought cycles) on targeted vulnerable local communities through improved response and preparedness activities.
Security in most of the highland areas of the country is considered stable. However, parts of the pastoral areas have security problems, often related to resources as well as inter- ethnic/inter-clan clashes. The situation in the Somali region is further complicated by the ongoing confrontation between the Ethiopian government and various armed groups. As a result, movements in the region, particularly in the Ogaden area, are highly restricted and several attacks against humanitarian agencies were reported. Access problems are also sometimes exacerbated by the reluctance of the authorities to support the actions of humanitarian partners, owing to mistrust resulting in bitter scrutiny, especially in some specific sectors such as nutrition.
The three Dadaab refugee camps, built to accommodate 90 000 people in the early 1990s, hosted 303 000 at the end of 2010, with a total of 65 200 new arrivals registered in the past year. In addition, over 25 000 refugees were registered in Kakuma camp, Turkana, and in Nairobi. The existing Dadaab camps operated far above their capacity, putting increased stress on refugees and the agencies providing assistance. The refugee protection situation in North-Eastern Province is a growing concern, as repeatedly documented by human rights organisations. The numbers of refugees increased, with the result that the Dadaab camps are the biggest refugee camp operation in the world. The refugee situation is mainly due to the state of affairs in Somalia. Local integration as a durable solution is officially very limited in Kenya. Resettlement to third countries does not exceed 10 000 cases a year. Repatriation is not an option for the foreseeable future in view of the current context. An exit from this refugee operation seems unlikely in the coming years.
The total allocation for Kenya in 2010 was 18 million, of which 13 million for operations in refugee camps. DG ECHO had two main objectives: supporting refugees and contributing to the improvement of nutrition services in the arid lands. Assistance was provided to the refugees in the Dadaab camps in vital sectors such as food, water, health and sanitation. DG ECHO also contributed significantly to the decongestion of these camps with strong financial support to the UNHCR for extending one of the camps. DG ECHO participated in the roll-out and implementation of the recently approved Integrated Management of Acute Malnutrition guidelines. More than 350 000 children and pregnant or lactating women were provided with specialised assistance. Advocacy efforts were stepped up to encourage the Government of Kenya and its development partners to engage more in nutrition in the arid and semi-arid lands of the country.
Close coordination among all EU departments continued. Linkages with the Water Facility were reinforced. Coordination with the EDF-supported Drought Management Initiative was sustained.
Humanitarian needs remained overwhelming in Somalia, a country afflicted by 20 years of conflict and instability, where the overall situation is aggravated and compounded by natural disasters (persistent cyclical droughts in the Central and Northern regions, floods, and epidemic outbreaks), undermined livelihoods, high commodity prices and eroded coping strategies. According to the latest FSNAU (Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit) estimates, 2 million people were in need of humanitarian assistance.
children acutely malnourished and one in twenty-two severely malnourished in South-Central Somalia, the nutrition situation remains one of the worst in the world.
In response to this humanitarian crisis the Commission allocated a total budget of 35 million to Somalia in 2010. The main sectors addressed were healthcare, nutrition, water and sanitation, food security, temporary shelters, coordination, protection and drought preparedness/response. Commission support in Somalia reached an estimated three million people. In the health sector, Commission support focused on primary healthcare, specialised mother and child healthcare, paediatrics and emergency war surgery as well as curative nutrition operations. Regarding food security, there were several components programmed, including the reinforcement of emergency veterinary services, delivery of seeds and tools, cash-based assistance (i.e. cash for work or unconditional cash) and other livelihood initiatives. One key life-saving programme was the wet feeding programme in Mogadishu, which continued to provide roughly 75 000 cooked meals a day. Water and sanitation, a sector of vital importance in Somalia, included improved access to water and hygiene. Most of the assistance has in the past been focused on the Central and South regions, where the large majority of the needs are still concentrated. However, because of the drought in the pastoral Central-North regions and an increased influx of IDPs to other areas of the North, Commission support continued to include assistance to the most vulnerable people of Puntland and Somaliland.
The reduction in the number of incidents directed at humanitarian personnel or assets was clearly linked to the reduced UN and NGO presence in South Somalia, where access for international staff remained highly restricted. Fighting for control of territory and the targeting of humanitarian assets and staff frequently prevented access to affected populations or interrupted assistance activities in different locations. In the course of the year a total of seven humanitarian agencies operating in the Central-South regions were expelled by armed opposition groups. Increased pressure and unacceptable requests from these groups triggered the suspension of aid operations in some cases. Despite this, the Commission sought ways to improve the delivery of aid in Somalia, including through rigorous selection of partners and programmes.
of the humanitarian response among multilateral and bilateral agencies and non-governmental agencies in Uganda.
Support was provided to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and the Norwegian Refugee Council under the first objective, to the WFP under the second objective, and to the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs under the third objective. In all 4 000 households considered to be extremely vulnerable were helped to attain a durable solution with shelter and latrine construction and provided with essential household items. A total of 97 transitional classrooms together with sanitation facilities were built in schools around the Acholi region and safe water provision was ensured in return areas by rehabilitating or constructing some 53 boreholes with incorporated hand pumps and protecting 72 spring sources. Protection monitoring and advocacy was undertaken for the whole of the IDP population to ensure that the durable solutions envisaged were voluntary. In all 99 721 extremely vulnerable IDPs received food aid until July 2010 when the general food distribution programme was terminated as planned.
Regional action in the Horn of Africa -- Disaster preparedness
At the beginning of the year, about 12 million people living in the arid and semi-arid lands (ASAL) of the Horn of Africa were in the initial phase of recovery from significant humanitarian needs, caused not only by the severe drought of 2009, but mostly by continuously eroded coping capacities as a result of recurrent drought exposure, deficient development and the inadequacy of disaster risk reduction policies and strategies, among other aspects. The population living in arid areas relies mostly on subsistence livestock keeping and/or agro-pastoralism and depends on the use of existing natural resources and/or the ability to move with their herds to areas with more water and better pasture. The effects of climate change -- rising temperatures and increasingly erratic rainfall -- have a serious impact on their livelihoods. The combination of restricted access to natural resources, inadequate resource management and a rise in the population in most of the region has increased the competition for scare resources and exacerbated resources-based conflicts. High levels of malnutrition in children, above WHO emergency thresholds, prevailed in many parts of the arid lands throughout the year and significant numbers of people remained food-aid dependent.
added value of DG ECHO's involvement (focus on the most vulnerable people, support to humanitarian partners). Up to 12 million pastoralists and/or agro-pastoralists were targeted -- directly and indirectly -- by DG ECHO disaster/drought risk reduction funding in the Horn of Africa spread over 18 months (July 2010-December 2011).
Poor security and limited access to target populations constrained the implementation of some activities in 2010. Some security constraints were encountered in Ethiopia's Southern and Ogaden regions, in North-Eastern Kenya and in the Karamoja region of Uganda, requiring DG ECHO to choose very carefully the places and types of intervention it could support for implementing DRR activities.
DG ECHO (in cooperation with other EU instruments) continued during the year to work towards setting the conditions for the pilot projects to be scaled up appropriately, as well as assuring their sustainability. The involvement of partners such as the FAO and the UN ISDR, as well as NGOs pursuing their efforts in terms of awareness and advocacy for DRR in the Horn of Africa, was essential in this respect, as these partners are working in both humanitarian and development contexts. The DRR actions contributed also to improving the quality and adequacy of the humanitarian response, through sharing of practices and lessons learnt in drought cycle management, as seen by the positive proactiveness of the humanitarian stakeholders in the initial response to the deterioration of the drought situation in the Horn of Africa towards the end of 2010.
3.3.3. West Africa
West Africa is one of the poorest and most underdeveloped regions in the world. Three quarters of the population live in rural areas and rely mainly on subsistence agriculture. Food production in the Sahel still relies mainly on erratic rainfall and livestock is reared in harsh environmental conditions aggravated by climate change (droughts, floods).
Table - Breakdown of funding (commitments) for West Africa
Humanitarian aidFood AidEDFTotal
In 2010, with a budget of 43 million, the principal objective of DG ECHO's strategy was to respond to the major food crisis threatening the region as a result of the poor harvests following the erratic rains during the 2009/2010 agricultural season and to achieve a sustainable reduction in acute malnutrition and in infant and maternal mortality rates.
Lessons learned from the 2005 nutritional crises in Niger and Mali were very important in providing indicators for a road map to deal with acute under-nutrition in the Sahel. Particular efforts have been made to avoid stand-alone humanitarian feeding centres and to encourage the integration of humanitarian action into the national health system and local structures.
Experience during the year demonstrated that progress has been made in increasing the involvement of governments and development donors in the fight against malnutrition. Current systems are not able to cope with the shock of a large-scale additional crisis and humanitarian aid is still necessary.
DG ECHO's Sahel strategy is built around the LRRD objective of positioning food and nutrition security at the centre of government policies and development aid programming. In 2010, the Commission funded operations in response to acute levels of malnutrition and to help those affected by the food crisis. During the year, funding in the five countries of the Sahel supported direct treatment of more than 300 000 children for acute malnutrition with 11 million other beneficiaries helped through food-related assistance.
DG ECHO successfully spearheaded the implementation of routine rapid nutrition surveys using the SMART methodology to improve access to reliable baseline information. This has now become a standard tool in West Africa. DG ECHO has continued to support Household Economy Analysis (HEA) in the region.
In addition to the funds allocated to the fight against malnutrition, DG ECHO adopted an emergency decision ( 2 million) in July in response to the severe floods in Burkina Faso which caused massive damage to homes and rural infrastructure, and a further emergency decision allowed DG ECHO to contribute to the needs of over 400 000 people affected by the floods in Benin ( 1.55 million).
Since the end of the conflict in Liberia, humanitarian needs in the country have evolved greatly. Major efforts have been made to improve access to basic services and to provide support to restore livelihoods. However, significant challenges remain: continued substitution by aid agencies and lack of qualified human resources still constitute the main feature of the public sector. The situation in the water and sanitation sector has improved, but a lot remains to be done in numerous rural communities as well as in urban areas, especially Monrovia, where regular cholera outbreaks occur; finally, food insecurity is still prevalent in numerous counties although efforts have been made to improve the situation.
In addition, since November 2010, the government and aid agencies have had to respond to a new caseload of Ivorian refugees seeking asylum in the remote eastern part of Liberia. Over 25 000 refugees are in need of multi-sector assistance.
In 2010, the focus was partly on continuing to support livelihoods at community level through food assistance and water and sanitation operations. In the health sector, the objective was to continue providing support, including a malnutrition project in Monrovia, and to attempt to secure the basis for a proper handover of DG ECHO's support. 9.95 million was allocated to support vulnerable Liberian populations in 2010.
Despite difficulties encountered in the field due to the lack of adequate government structures, some significant progress has been made: the EDF will as a priority take over the funding of previous DG ECHO-supported operations in the health sector in early 2011 and the nutrition programme will be integrated into Ministry of Health structures. Creation of a National Water Resource and Sanitation Board in 2010 makes it possible to start a real LRRD process in this sector.
Despite two successful elections since the end of the civil war in 2001, Sierra Leone still faces major challenges in development and good governance. Progress in rehabilitating the economy and building up basic health and education services has been slow. Access to healthcare in Sierra Leone has been constrained by a complex mix of factors, including limited availability of staff and drugs, traditional beliefs, lack of transport and affordability. The authorities have a limited capacity to deal with health problems, resulting in one of the highest maternal mortality ratios in the world and an infant under five mortality rate of 194/1 000 live births.
Table - Breakdown of funding (commitments) for Southern Africa and Indian Ocean
Humanitarian Food AidDipechoEDFTotal
Malawi1 500 0001 500 000
Zambia1 200 0001 200 000
Zimbabwe13 000 0003 000 0002 000 00018 000 000
Southern Africa5 000 0006 000 00011 000 000
TOTAL 13 000 0008 000 0006 000 0004 700 00031 700 000
In 2010, DG ECHO provided funding to the tune of 1.5 million from EDF funds to support an emergency mass measles vaccination campaign with the intention of containing and controlling a serious epidemic outbreak of the disease in the south and centre of the country.
By the time emergency operations ended in October, Commission funding had supported the vaccination of more than 1 250 000 children between the ages of 6 months and 15 years, as well as the treatment of thousands of cases.
In the light of the continued stabilisation of the conflict in the south-east of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, DG ECHO provided 1.2 million from EDF funds in 2010 to continue its support for the voluntary repatriation of Congolese refugees from camps in Zambia. This final phase saw a further 7 000 refugees repatriated.
The general objective in 2010 was to mitigate the effects of socio-economic breakdown on the deteriorating situation of vulnerable groups and contribute to the delivery of basic social services to the population. In January, an ad hoc decision was adopted in order to contribute 2 million (EDF funds) to the procurement and distribution of essential medicines and medical supplies. The early part of the year was marked by a huge measles epidemic, which triggered the adoption in April of an emergency decision allocating 1 million to support a mass vaccination campaign. Humanitarian operations were further funded in the areas of health, water and sanitation (following an integrated public health approach) and emergency household food security and livelihoods. All the activities included HIV/AIDS prevention components. An amount of 15 million was made available for funding such operations. In October, an inter-service mission was carried out to identify the third phase of a short-term strategy of support, focusing on health, education, food security and governance, and overall on the LRRD approach.
mitigate and respond adequately to natural disasters. The areas chosen for this second action plan are among the most vulnerable in the region to recurring natural disasters.
In view of the initial lessons learned from DIPECHO operations during the implementation of the first Action Plan, it was decided to make available an amount of 5 million from the main humanitarian aid budget line in order to support complementary and parallel pilot food security operations focusing on disaster risk reduction. Actions under this innovative approach commenced in Madagascar, Malawi and Mozambique in August, with first indications pointing to wholehearted enthusiasm of the beneficiary communities and successful outcomes.
3.4. Middle East and Mediterranean
DG ECHO continued to be involved in preserving the dignity of its beneficiaries in the Middle East and Mediterranean region in 2010. Some of the longest running humanitarian crises in the world persist in this region, including the plight of the Sahrawi refugees in Algeria, living in camps in the Sahara desert under extremely harsh conditions.
Table - Breakdown of funding (commitments) for the Middle East and Mediterranean
Humanitarian Food AidTotal
Occupied Palestinian Territory31 700 00019 300 00051 000 000
Palestinian refugees in Lebanon5 800 0001 200 0007 000 000
Iraq Crisis16 000 0002 000 00018 000 000
Yemen10 000 00010 000 000
Western Sahara4 500 0005 500 00010 000 000
TOTAL 68 000 00028 000 00096 000 000
Palestinian population in the occupied Palestinian territory and Lebanon
The Israeli military operation against the Flotilla sailing to Gaza in May 2010 and the international uproar that it caused led to the Israeli Government's decision on 20 June to loosen up the access regime of the Gaza Strip. However, changes on the ground in terms of access (humanitarian and commercial) have been very limited. The announcement in December by the Israeli Government of new measures to facilitate exports out of Gaza was a welcome development, but at the end of the year levels of exports were still far below pre- blockade levels.
Restrictions on freedom of movement imposed by Israeli authorities have continued to impact the lives of Palestinians: economic growth is still impaired, and people's access to education, employment, healthcare and other services is still heavily disrupted. At the same time, settlers' violence, confiscation of land, forced evictions, house demolitions and displacements went on uninterrupted in 2010. Humanitarian aid in these areas focuses on basic needs such as food assistance, water supply, health and sanitation, as well as protection and psychosocial activities.
In 2010, evictions and house demolitions were a growing concern for Palestinian communities living in East Jerusalem and more and more Palestinian families run the risk of displacement
Living conditions for most Palestinian refugees in Lebanon are very precarious. With two thirds of them living in UNRWA camps or unofficial gatherings scattered across the country, they have limited access to basic services. Palestinian refugees remain highly dependent on external assistance for the provision of healthcare, and humanitarian food assistance in the Nahr El Bared Camp, where the entire population has been displaced, is still an acute need.
The Commission provided 58 million for humanitarian operations benefiting Palestinians in the occupied Palestinian territory and in Lebanon.
A total of 51 million was devoted to operations in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. 62 %
of the response directly supported the population of Gaza. In the protection sector, the Commission paid particular attention to the prevention of violations of international humanitarian law. The working environment in both the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, where restricted access continues to shrink humanitarian space, remains volatile. In the occupied Palestinian territory, close and effective coordination was maintained with other donors to ensure that humanitarian assistance and other programmes complement each other, in particular Pegase.
For Palestinian refugees in Lebanon ( 7 million), a significant part of the EU humanitarian aid supported the Nahr El Bard population through in-cash or in-kind food assistance, rental subsidies and shelter rehabilitation activities.
Nevertheless, Iraq remains a very dangerous country where civilians are killed on a daily basis. Humanitarian access is of prime concern as some areas remain inaccessible due to continued violence. The neighbouring countries, Syria and Jordan, are struggling to cope with a high number of refugees: 139 000 UNHCR-registered in Syria and 31 000 in Jordan as of October, and an unknown number of unregistered refugees.
In 2010, DG ECHO provided humanitarian assistance to the vulnerable population of Iraq and to the Iraqi refugees living in neighbouring countries for an amount of 18 million. The Decision included a significant protection component as well as activities in the fields of health and psychosocial support, water and sanitation and direct assistance (cash, non-food items -- NFIs). The strategy followed recommendations made by an external evaluation conducted at the end of 2009.
The most vulnerable groups, especially the internally displaced in Iraq, cannot be easily reached by humanitarian assistance. Massive displacements do not take place any more in Iraq and the few displacements are due to attacks targeting minorities. Insecurity has limited the population's mobility and access to basic services and has severely damaged public infrastructure. Reconstruction efforts, although substantial, are severely hindered by continued violence resulting in high levels of unemployment, a steady decline of basic services and a significant deterioration of the health and education sectors.
Coordination with other donors remains good, with regular meetings between DG ECHO and the Member States and the United States in Amman and Damascus, while coordination in Iraq is limited by the security issue.
The limited resources of Yemen, one of the poorest countries in the Arab world, have been stretched by the conflict with the Al Houthi movement in the north, the continuous influx of refugees from the Horn of Africa, the disturbances in the south, the fight against terrorism and growing socio-economic difficulties.
According to the UNHCR, about 200 000 people were registered as displaced persons following the clashes in the north at the end of the year. However, the total affected population could reach one million. At the same period of time, following the large migration flows during the year, the number of refugees reached 250 000 persons, all in need of humanitarian aid. In addition, the country suffers from a high level of malnutrition which undermines the survival of young children. The 2011 OCHA consolidated appeal was launched for a total amount of $ 225 million, aiming mainly to fund operations in the food and nutrition sectors for the IDPs and the refugee population.
DG ECHO has funded OCHA coordination activities in order to improve the needs analysis and the efficiency of the aid provided and to advocate the mobilisation of additional funding and access to all the population affected by the different conflicts. A risk management component has also been supported to enhance humanitarian NGO security.
Sahrawi refugees (Algeria)
Since 1975, tens of thousands of Sahrawi refugees have been hosted by Algeria in camps situated in the South-Western region of Tindouf. The living conditions of the Sahrawi refugees, who have been living in these camps for more than 30 years, are extremely difficult. Refugees depend completely on humanitarian aid to meet their basic needs: food, health, water/sanitation, shelter, hygiene and education.
According to the needs identified by the World Food Programme (WFP), 125 000 basic food rations equivalent to 2 100 kcal/ration/day need to be provided to the refugees each month. Given the arid environment of the Sahrawi camps, water is the refugees' main need. It is supplied through wells and boreholes, and treated, stored and distributed through water trucks and a tube distribution network connected to tap stands. The immediate objective is to guarantee 15 litres per day per person. The tube distribution network needs to be expanded as the limitations of the water trucking system are numerous: irregularity of water supply, especially in summer, due to the high maintenance requirements of the tanker trucks, which are old and in bad condition; insufficiency of the quantity of water supplied; risk of contamination of the water during transport and storage even though the water quality is adequate at source.
Sanitation is a key concern, particularly in communal facilities such as schools and health centres. The situation varies from one facility to the other, with some schools having no functioning latrines and others having latrines in need of rehabilitation and maintenance.
The health system, which is composed of dispensaries and regional hospitals, has two
weaknesses: (1) an ongoing lack of resources and a dependency on international aid for the supply of consumables, drugs and vaccines; (2) structural problems inherent in running a health system, such as difficulties in keeping qualified staff (particularly doctors and nurses). Because of climate conditions, particularly sand storms, tents have a limited lifespan of approximately five years (if they are good quality), and must therefore be regularly replaced. There is also a need for new tents for newly formed families.
Table - Breakdown of funding (commitments) for the Caucasus
Humanitarian Food AidTotal
Caucasus 2 000 0002 000 000
TOTAL 2 000 0002 000 000
The armed conflicts in Chechnya in 1994-96 and 1999-2001 left thousands of civilians killed, hundreds of thousands wounded, over 270 000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) in neighbouring republics, over 100 000 refugees abroad, towns and villages levelled to the ground and the socio-economic infrastructure completely destroyed. Even if it is difficult to obtain exact figures, it is estimated that there are still some 30 000 IDPs in Chechnya, 8 000 IDPs in Ingushetia, 3 800 IDPs in Dagestan and 1 300 refugees in Azerbaijan. In addition, the number of war-affected vulnerable households within Chechnya who are still homeless and waiting for assistance to rebuild their houses stands at around 20 000.
All humanitarian needs, except those related to protection, are now covered. With a budget of 2 million, the EU humanitarian operation focused on the protection needs of the vulnerable population, including IDPs and returnees. It encompassed livelihood support and temporary shelter activities when it was deemed necessary to complement the protection activities.
The situation remains tense, and the number of violent incidents continued to rise in 2010.
In 2010, humanitarian and food assistance operations were funded in 20 countries in Asia, for a total of 281 million, representing 25 % of the total budget managed by DG ECHO.
EU humanitarian assistance was provided and implemented in the following regions:
3.6.1. Central and South-West Asia
DG ECHO has been present in Central Asia since 1993, initially to provide assistance in the wake of the civil war in Tajikistan and later to respond to natural disasters and support disaster preparedness projects through DIPECHO. Central Asia is politically volatile and is prone to numerous types of natural disasters including floods, landslides and mudslides, drought, earthquakes and avalanches and severe floods.
Table - Breakdown of funding (coommitments) for Central and South West Asia
Humanitarian Food AidDipechoTotal
Afghanistan 30 000 0006 000 00036 000 000
Pakistan125 000 00025 000 000150 000 000
Kyrgyzstan / Uzbekistan5 000 0005 000 000
Central Asia7 295 0007 295 000
TOTAL160 000 00031 000 0007 295 000198 295 000
Afghanistan (including Afghan refugees in Pakistan and Iran)
The main groups with substantial humanitarian needs in 2010 were the over 335 000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) within Afghanistan affected by the conflict, as well as refugees returning from Pakistan and Iran. Host communities receiving these returnees are also beneficiaries of the programmes. The highly food-insecure population affected by recurrent natural disasters, including many years of drought and the recent severe flooding in the north and east, have been benefiting from assistance too. The needs of the returnees and IDPs included protection, transport and resettlement support, plus food, shelter, and water/sanitation for the most vulnerable such as female-headed households. Another significant area of humanitarian support remains protection and food assistance for the most vulnerable population affected by natural disasters.
The focus in 2010 was on assisting the IDPs and the return of refugees and providing basic livelihood support for the most vulnerable returnees and for their host communities. Vulnerable people affected by natural disasters such as floods and earthquakes were also supported by DG ECHO in 2010.
Under its 2010 Global Plan, the EU provided funding totalling 36 million, including 25.4 million in support for refugees and returnees, covering registration and transportation of refugees from Pakistan and Iran to Afghanistan, support for reintegration plus aid for the most vulnerable of the remaining refugees in both countries. Protection assistance was provided, among others through the UNHCR and the ICRC in line with their respective protection mandates. Shelter, together with water/sanitation, was the other most important area of activity within Afghanistan. Responses to localised natural disasters were supported in northern and eastern regions of the country. Given the constraints of security and geography, support for security advisory services as well as coordination for aid agencies in Afghanistan and for a subsidised humanitarian flight service was maintained at a level of 4.6 million. A total of 6 million in food assistance was allocated to Afghanistan in order to respond to the food insecurity linked to years of recurrent drought followed by serious flooding in 2009 and 2010.
Three humanitarian challenges confronted Pakistan in 2010: devastating floods; the needs of the conflict-affected population -- the displaced, returnees and those remaining in their areas of origin; and the remaining Afghan refugees.
During the summer of 2010 the country was hit by unprecedented floods, the worst in living memory in Pakistan. Around 18 million people were affected, 1.7 million homes damaged or destroyed, and 1 985 people killed
31.The agricultural heartland of the country was devastated
and there was very significant damage to public and private infrastructure.
At the same time, displacement of conflict-affected civilians continued throughout 2010. The fighting between militant groups and Pakistan's security forces, which started in 2007, continued to affect Baluchistan, the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and Khyber Pahtunkhwa Province (KPK
32). The Pakistani Army military operations triggered
displacements in the FATA. In addition, pockets of resistance and instability remained in Buner, Swat, Upper and Lower Dir in KPK despite the heavy military presence. Night-time curfews and military checkpoints were still in place to some degree. Around 1.2 million civilians in conflict areas are affected.
Pakistan continues to host a sizeable population of Afghan refugees, despite the considerable return movement to Afghanistan over the last 10 years.
In 2010, the Commission allocated 150 million in relief assistance to respond to immediate and basic needs of the population affected by the floods and by the internal conflict (IDPs, returnees). Part of the population in the North was affected by both disasters. This included:
(1) support for emergency food assistance, managed by several actors including INGOs and the WFP, (2) support for the ICRC's protection activities and distribution of food and other essentials (NFIs) to IDPs, returnees and the flood-affected population; (3) support for the provision of protection, shelter and NFIs to flood- and conflict-affected IDPs by the UNHCR and shelter by the IOM; (4) provision of healthcare by medical INGOs and the WHO and its partners; (5) support for INGO partners to provide water, sanitation and hygiene. Support for the coordination of humanitarian assistance was channelled through UNOCHA and for logistics through the WFP. Awareness-raising on mine risks was also channelled through some very specialised INGOs. Disaster risk reduction was encouraged in the flood response.
The inter-ethnic violence that erupted in Kyrgyzstan in June triggered a rapid emergency response ( 5 million) to assist some 300 000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Kyrgyzstan and some 75 000 refugees who had fled to Uzbekistan. Commissioner Georgieva visited the country on 3 and 4 July to discuss the situation with the provisional government and to get a first-hand view of the humanitarian needs in the South. As the refugees returned home within weeks after the conflict, humanitarian efforts have concentrated on providing protection and emergency aid as well as transitional shelter to returnees and IDPs in the south
In Kyrgyzstan, DG ECHO allocated emergency aid to the WFP for distributing food rations, to the ICRC for protection and distribution of food rations, household items and cash for work activities, to MSF-Suisse for providing free medical care, to ACTED for providing free legal aid and cash for work, and to the UNHCR for providing shelter, clothes and other essential non-food items. An ECHO field mission in December confirmed that needs (shelter, food, protection, health) are adequately covered for now. The EU continues to monitor the situation closely and is ready to assist should there be a need for further humanitarian aid to the civilian population. In responding to the crisis, maps developed under the Fifth DIPECHO for disaster preparedness were extensively used for all humanitarian operations by both NGOs and UN agencies.
Regional action in Central Asia -- DIPECHO
DG ECHO continues to support disaster preparedness in Central Asia through the Sixth DIPECHO Action Plan ( 7.295 million). The ECHO office in Tajikistan coordinates with the EU delegations and actively participates in meetings with DIPECHO partners.
Central Asia is particularly exposed to natural disasters such as landslides, avalanches, floods, earthquakes, drought and melting glaciers. Moreover, the Centre for Research on the Epidemic of Disasters (CRED) records that nearly 3 million people were affected by hydro- meteorological disasters in Tajikistan in 2008.
The geographic nature of the region (developing mountain ranges combined with frequent earthquakes), and the fact that a large part of its territory is covered by mountains, expose the region to a number of potential natural disasters. Furthermore, climate change has become an important factor in the sharp increase in the occurrence of small- and medium-scale disasters. The tendency of the population to settle in valleys and along riverbanks also makes them more vulnerable to disasters such as floods, mudflows and landslides.
The strategic logic of the Sixth DIPECHO Action Plan ( 7.3 million) follows on from the previous action plans, with a focus on multi-country and regional operations consistent with the Priorities for Action identified in the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005-2015 (HFA): `Building the Resilience of Nations and Communities to Disasters'. Its aim is to support the five Central Asian countries (Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan) in the implementation of their action plan. Afghanistan is also covered with a cross-border pilot action.
In 2010 the DIPECHO programme addressed both the risks of large-scale disasters and the expected impact of accumulated recurrent small- and medium-scale natural events on the most vulnerable populations. DG ECHO continued to reach national actors and communities at risk through partner NGOs, the Red Cross family and international organisations.
3.6.2. Central South Asia
The region is marked by instability and conflicts but is also prone to disasters. Access for partners remains restricted (Sri Lanka) or impossible, preventing assistance from reaching beneficiaries (India).
Table - Breakdown of funding (commitments) for Central South Asia
Humanitarian Food AidDipechoTotal
Bangladesh12 000 0006 000 00018 000 000
India3 400 0003 400 000
Nepal1 500 0001 500 0003 000 000
Sri Lanka10 000 00010 000 000
Total26 900 0007 500 00034 400 000
Bangladesh, the world's most densely populated country, is highly vulnerable to natural disasters, in particular floods, cyclones and earthquakes, a vulnerability exacerbated by climate change. The year 2010 was no exception for Bangladeshi people, who had to face two ongoing natural disasters, one new natural disaster and a protracted crisis.
commence, in a region highly dependent on this single annual crop. In all 1.7 million people have been severely affected by the disaster and, with insufficient coping capacities and no alternative subsistence means, are facing an acute crisis which has serious detrimental impact on their nutritional status. DG ECHO support to victims of the Haor flash floods took place in two steps. A first allocation ( 3 million) was made available to fill the food gap and respond to the acute needs identified. In the light of the deteriorating situation and the absence of other donors, extra funding ( 7 million) was decided, with the aim of covering additional severely affected people during the lean season, to avoid further deterioration of their food security situation until the next paddy harvest is due.
The protracted crisis affecting the unregistered Rohingya refugees worsened during 2010, as a result of humanitarian access restrictions. The situation is directly impacting the humanitarian situation of undocumented refugees through a sharp increase in the malnutrition rate, well above emergency thresholds. Despite access problems, support to the two unofficial settlements continued in 2010, albeit at a lower pace, and provided basic humanitarian assistance (healthcare, therapeutic feeding, safe water and sanitary conditions, protection and security) to unregistered Rohingyas settled in these camps. Due to restricted humanitarian access, most of the programmes had to be downgraded and focused on pure life-saving activities. A recent nutritional survey indicates that the malnutrition rate in one of the unofficial settlements increased to an alarming level during this period.
The conflict opposing Maoist fighters (Naxals) and security forces intensified in 2010. Chhattisgarh, in particular its southernmost district, is one of the worst affected areas and the population (mainly tribal people and scheduled castes) are caught between the conflicting parties. Some areas are totally inaccessible and in general the region is acutely lacking in basic social services, as it is practically impossible to hire doctors or teachers to work in such a risky environment. Tens of thousands are displaced as a consequence of the fighting and this number is increasing due to a recent escalation of hostilities. Several independent reports point to continued serious human rights violations, including the use of child soldiers. In 2010 some 74 000 people benefited from curative and preventive basic healthcare services with DG ECHO's financial support, which amounted to 1.4 million.
The conflict opposing Maoist rebels and the Royal Army cost 13 000 lives and although it ended in 2006 the country still suffers from its consequences, being marked by high volatility and frequent spates of violence. The conflict isolated populations and disrupted trade and agricultural activities; it destroyed water supply systems and communications infrastructure. Health posts do not function properly and lack trained personnel, hygiene, medicines and waste treatment equipment and systems. The Nepalese authorities are still not able to provide basic services to remote communities due to the unstable political situation. With Commission funding, amounting to 1.5 million, primary and reproductive healthcare was extended to 100 000 people; 32 250 people benefited from water and sanitation systems and 250 000 people from mine-related services.
At the end of 2010 there were still 73 000 Bhutanese refugees of Nepali origin living in seven camps. These refugees are victims of a forgotten crisis and have been living in these camps since 1992, accepted by neither Nepal nor Bhutan, and fully dependent on external aid. In the absence of a political solution, the United Sates and other countries have offered resettlement options and since 2008 more than 40 000 refugees have been resettled. DG ECHO has been providing food aid to the refugees remaining in the camps. In 2010 this assistance amounted
to 1.5 million.
DG ECHO's assistance to the Bhutanese refugees is supplemented with support from EuropeAid for the UNHCR's camp management. The resettlement programme brought fresh hopes for a possible solution. It is expected that most refugees will opt for resettlement, but given the size of the caseload it will take close to five years to complete the process. During that time political efforts will be kept up to lobby for a solution for those not able or willing to relocate, including return to Bhutan and the possibility for others to settle legally in Nepal.
In 2010, more than 2.7 million people living in the mid- and far-western hilly areas were still considered as food unsecure by the World Food Programme. Among these people 471 600 were considered to be severely or highly food unsecure. DG ECHO constantly monitors this situation.
Specifically for humanitarian demining, actions funded by the Commission in 2010 facilitated the safe return of almost 30 000 former IDPs to their place of origin. As humanitarian demining organisations predominantly hire locals for demining activities, a secondary impact of this work is the employment opportunities that these organisations offer, which help returnee families meet their needs independently of external assistance. It is also an important means by which returnees re-appropriate their place of origin, from which people had been displaced for years, and in some cases decades.
An additional focus of EC-funded actions in the areas of return has been multi-sector operations, which included shelter, livelihood and food assistance components. Through three NGO partners, DG ECHO was able to build transitional shelters and provide livelihood support through food assistance to almost 40 000 people in the areas of return. Another important area of activity has been health. Through two DG ECHO partners, healthcare for persons with disabilities was ensured, either through physiotherapy or by funding the construction of an operating theatre that allowed complex surgeries to be performed.
Protection concerns prevail, especially with a high proportion of returning families headed by women. This factor, combined with the sustained military presence and the limited income- generating activities available, has created a fragile situation where the vulnerability of those already deemed most vulnerable is exacerbated further. Throughout DG ECHO's strategy in
Sri Lanka, protection is a guiding operational pillar. The EU funded the UNHCR for raising the awareness of protection needs among a number of key stakeholders in the areas of return, thus working towards improving the general protection environment. With a number of humanitarian actors still present, and development activities on the rise, coordination is key to ensure that aid is delivered effectively to those most in need. Through the work of OCHA, DG ECHO has sought to ensure that coordination arrangements remain in place as we enter a critical LRRD transition phase.
The security situation has remained stable since the end of the conflict and the main safety risk incurred by partners is the prevalence of mines and UXO in the areas of return. Access for DG ECHO partners remains restricted, although the general trend shows improvements. There is also room for improvement in terms of coordination with development actors.
In the Philippines, DG ECHO continued addressing the humanitarian needs of people affected by the armed conflict in Mindanao. Assistance was provided to displaced persons still living in evacuation centres, in makeshift shelters and with host families. The IDP return process was also supported.
Laos continued to face food shortages as a consequence of the 2009 Ketsana floods and DG ECHO decided to support the provision of rice to 100 000 people, thus bridging the gap until the next harvest.
Following an acute watery diarrhoea (AWD)/cholera outbreak in Cambodia, Laos and the Burmese refugee camps in Thailand, a funding decision was adopted for emergency measures to save lives and contain the outbreak.
In Burma/Myanmar the humanitarian situation, especially in Northern Rakhine State and along the eastern border, continued to be of concern and clashes between ethnic groups and the Burmese army escalated after the elections in November, causing large displacements into Thailand. Aung San Suu Kyi was finally released after 15 years under house arrest. It is uncertain how this event will impact the political and humanitarian situation in the country.
In Mongolia the winter of 2009-2010 was exceptionally cold and the country was affected by a disaster known as `Dzud', arising from continuous heavy snowfall combined with extreme cold and preceded by dry summers, resulting in insufficient grazing pastures and massive loss of livestock. As a third of the 2.7 million population of Mongolia are nomadic herders who depend on livestock for a living, the humanitarian impact was significant.
In 2010 the Seventh DIPECHO Action Plan for South-East Asia was adopted with a budget of 10 million allocated to Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Burma/Myanmar, the Philippines, Indonesia, East Timor and Thailand over the next two years to help communities prepare for disasters (see also Section 3.9 on disaster preparedness activities).
Table - Breakdown of funding (commitments) for South East and East Asia
Humanitarian Food AidDipechoTotal
coercive measures. The situation is politically rooted and has turned into an acute humanitarian situation. The other area of concern to DG ECHO is Eastern Burma/Myanmar, where the displacement of some 470 000 persons has created considerable humanitarian needs. Ongoing military operations, compounded by the remoteness of the area, leave the ethnic minority population vulnerable to threats and abuse. Protection is a priority. Government policy to cut support to the ethnic armed groups has worsened living conditions for the civilian population. Health, water, sanitation, shelter and livelihoods are some of the sectors with major needs.
In 2010 the Commission continued to provide humanitarian assistance to vulnerable populations affected by the conflict for a total amount of 9.25 million. Activities focused on the ethnic minorities living in the Eastern border areas and on the stateless Rohingya population in Northern Rakhine State. Key sectors of assistance included protection, food aid, nutrition, primary healthcare and water and sanitation. Support for information and data management, through the Myanmar Information Management Office (MIMU), was added as
a new component.
Limited access is a characteristic of almost all aid programmes in Myanmar. Despite government constraints (visas, travel authorisations, etc.) programmes and activities can still be implemented and direct access to the beneficiaries, although not always permanent, is possible. Likewise, with lengthy administrative preparations, programmes can be monitored. The main humanitarian agencies of the UN system are present, as are the IOM and 63 INGOs.
The conflict and the poor economic situation in Myanmar have resulted in a huge influx of its citizens into Thailand. An estimated three million Burmese reside in Thailand, including approximately 140 000 ethnic Karen refugees living in nine refugee camps along the Thai- Myanmar border. The Karen refugees still have strong links with Myanmar and some of them are involved in the Karen Liberation Army/Karen National Union (KNLA/KNU) political and military rebel movements. Humanitarian needs in the refugee camps in Thailand relate to food security and livelihood, water, sanitation, health, protection and finding sustainable solutions. There is also a need to re-launch the refugee screening and registration process. After decades of existence of the Burmese refugee camps a different type of response and assistance is now required. Donors agree that it is imperative to move from hand-outs towards sustainable solutions which include livelihood alternatives. This transition is particularly important because refugees have become totally aid-dependent after such a long period of encampment.
In this process, the Five-year Strategic Plan drawn up by the Committee for the Coordination of Services to Displaced Persons in Thailand (CCSDPT) and the UNHCR represents an important step forward. The Plan will provide a basis for dialogue with the Thai Government on finding durable solutions for the refuges by providing them with an alternative to expand their self-reliance.
management, targeting and the need to ensure that humanitarian principles are respected in the camps. In December DG ECHO field staff took part in a Heads of Mission field visit to one of the refugee camps.
Following the elections in Burma/Myanmar in November, fighting along the border with Thailand increased and by the end of the year up to 20 000 people had fled into Thailand, where they settled in temporary sites under Thai authority or went into hiding. Most of these people went back as the situation calmed down. The UNHCR played an important role in coordinating the relief response to these new influxes.
The year saw some of the worst flooding in 30 years affecting large parts of Thailand. Continuous heavy rains in August caused floods affecting 922 villages in 16 provinces, mostly in the rural, mountainous north and north-east of Thailand. Flooding was also reported in some central and eastern provinces. Close to 1.5 million people were affected. In response to the floods, the IFRC intervened to cover unmet humanitarian needs, targeting 10 000 vulnerable people living in evacuation centres, in inundated homes and isolated by the floods. Emergency kits were provided for two months.
Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam
Vietnam, one of the world's most disaster-prone countries, has over the years developed good coping mechanisms to prepare for and mitigate the impact of natural hazards. Even so, local capacity can be exhausted when disasters exceed their normal intensity. This was the case in October and November, when strong rains caused widespread flooding with huge damage and a great number of casualties in the Central and Southern Provinces of the country. More than 2 million people were affected and almost 200 people died in Ha Tinh, Quang Tri, Thua Thien Hue, Nghe An, Quang Binh, Phu Yen, Khanh Hoa and Ninh Thuan. Tens of thousands of households had their food stocks and basic assets severely depleted.
In Laos and Cambodia, the prevalence of major disasters is considered medium to low, but it is the overall vulnerability of these countries that create relatively high risks for communities when disasters occur. Food insecurity is an endemic problem, particularly in Laos where the humanitarian situation one year after the floods caused by the September 2009 Ketsana typhoon remains extremely precarious, particularly in the Southern Provinces where rice crops in 2010 were severely affected. A UNICEF survey, released in June, showed severe to critical global acute malnutrition rates in the Ketsana-affected Southern Provinces. An epidemic of acute watery diarrhoea (AWD)/cholera broke out in both countries in August/September, affecting more severely the two bordering provinces of Attapeu and Rattanakiri with more than 2 200 cases reported and 42 deaths. In June an ad hoc financing decision of 1 million was adopted to help Ketsana-stricken populations in the Southern Provinces of Laos to bridge the food gap until the next harvest. The WFP was tasked to provide rice to almost 100 000 beneficiaries.
In 2010, two main geological events hit Indonesia, causing significant humanitarian needs. On 25 October, a 7.7 Richter scale magnitude earthquake struck the Mentawai islands, off the western coast of Sumatra, triggering a tsunami. Only a few hours later, Mount Merapi in Central Java erupted, triggering a mass evacuation which intensified in the following days as the volcanic activity continued.
The earthquake/tsunami in Mentawai killed 431 and displaced 15 000 people. The hot gas and ash from the volcano killed more than 300 people and forced around 400 000 to evacuate their homes, making it Merapi's worst eruption in a century. In Mentawai, needs assessment and relief activities were hindered for several days by adverse weather conditions that caused access problems. Aid coordination then became a challenge, due to the large number of relief organisations on the ground and difficult logistics. In the Merapi area, the situation remained fluid for weeks, with new eruptions causing further displacements and forced relocation of evacuation centres as the danger zone expanded. Relief operations required continuous adjustments.
The humanitarian needs caused by these massive displacements mostly related to emergency shelter, water, food supplies, relief items, medical assistance and psychological support. No official request for international assistance was made by Indonesia, but various international donors offered support (totalling USD 5 322 084) when the national coping capacity, already under strain due to climatic events, appeared overstretched. On 27 October the Commission adopted a primary emergency decision of 1.5 million, which allowed five projects to be funded in the areas of shelter, water and sanitation, basic necessities, health, transport, communication and logistics, and including risk awareness and disaster preparedness measures, providing assistance to some 40 000 beneficiaries.
The winter of 2009-2010 was exceptionally cold in Mongolia, causing a significant number of people to freeze to death. The country experienced a disaster known as `Dzud', a phenomenon arising from continuous heavy snowfall combined with extreme cold and preceded by dry summers, resulting in insufficient grazing pastures and massive loss of livestock. As one third of the 2.7 million population of Mongolia are nomadic herders who depend entirely on livestock for a living, the impact was significant. In January 2010 the Government of Mongolia appealed for international assistance, which is coordinated by the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), together with the Ministries of Agriculture, Education and Health. By the end of April, 15 of Mongolia's 21 provinces, inhabited by 770 000 people, were declared disaster zones, and another four provinces were seriously affected. More than 7.8 million animals (mainly goats and sheep, but also horses, cows and camels), representing 17 % of total numbers, had died in the space of four months due to the cold and the lack of fodder. Over 500 000 inhabitants of the disaster zones were considered at risk of food insecurity. In addition, thousands of people were forced to migrate to urban centres, mainly to Ulaanbaatar (the capital), requiring assistance with water, sanitation, health and livelihoods. Protection was required for the children of some destitute herders, involved in illegal mining activities.
basic relief items, hygiene, water and sanitation. Disaster preparedness/risk reduction was mainstreamed into most activities.
The LRRD process is underway, as the Dzud is a recurrent problem, linked to economic and social structures requiring long-term strategies. Mongolia is a vast country, with few roads and an extreme climate, so difficulties had to be overcome to gain access to beneficiaries.
In the Philippines DG ECHO continued addressing the humanitarian needs of people affected by the armed conflict in Mindanao. At the end of 2009, about 300 000 people were still displaced as a result of renewed clashes between the Government of the Philippines and the MILF (Moro Islamic Liberation Front). In the first six months of 2010, the security situation started to improve along with progress in the peace talks between the parties, and with the ceasefire supervised by a Joint Coordinating Committee for the Cessation of Hostilities and by an International Monitoring Team, under Malaysian command.
Through an ad hoc decision allocating 5 million adopted in January, DG ECHO continued to provide assistance to displaced persons still living in evacuation centres, in makeshift shelters and with host families, and supported the IDP return process. DG ECHO funded projects providing integrated life-saving assistance ( 2 million for shelter, health, water and sanitation, coordination), food assistance and livelihood recovery ( 3 million). At the end of 2010 the number of people still displaced (partly due to clan-related violence) did not exceed 25 000, which confirmed the relevance of phasing out humanitarian aid in favour of longer- term instruments.
In parallel, DG ECHO kept addressing the outstanding needs generated by the devastating tropical storms and typhoons of September/October 2009 (Ketsana, Parma, Mirinae), which had affected 9 million people in the north and centre of the country, and whose consequences on livelihoods were later compounded by the effects of El Niño. A follow-up financing decision of 4 million was adopted in June 2010, funding projects covering the humanitarian needs related to shelter and livelihoods and assisting over 200 000 vulnerable people.
townships. The authorities confirmed 45 deaths and 260 000 people affected. According to UNDP figures 102 000 people were made homeless and 20 380 houses were destroyed. The allocation of 3 million (out of the 7 million) to cyclone Giri-affected areas benefited 250 000 vulnerable people and allowed the urgent distribution of food and non-food items, basic shelters, primary healthcare and water and sanitation.
Torrential rains also affected Vietnam, bringing flooding and ensuing landslides in five central provinces. The amount allocated ( 1.4 million out of the 7 million total) addressed the urgent humanitarian needs of over 100 000 persons in the central provinces of Vietnam in the sectors of shelters, water and sanitation, non-food relief items and livelihood recovery.
Regional action in South-East Asia -- DIPECHO
In terms of natural hazards, South-East Asia is particularly exposed to floods, flash floods, typhoons, cyclones, earthquakes, tsunamis and tidal surges, landslides, droughts, forest fires and volcanic eruptions.
Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam are among the top ten countries worst hit by natural disasters, in particular earthquakes, floods and typhoons. The socio-economic impact of natural disasters is considerable, in particular for the poorest and most isolated populations. However, losses could be largely mitigated or avoided by simple preventive measures. The Seventh DIPECHO for the region targets up 2 million people with funding of 10 million.
Over the past few decades, the typology of disasters has changed in South-East Asia due mainly to man-made causes such as widespread deforestation, illegal land use and the absence of law enforcement, which contribute to aggravating the effects of an increasingly erratic meteorological cycle. The vulnerability profile is also changing, with increased urban migration and erosion of traditional coping mechanisms, including decreased resistance to potential pandemics.
In parallel, all South-East Asian Governments have expressed commitment to the implementation of the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005-2015 (HFA): `Building the Resilience of Nations and Communities to Disasters'. Cambodia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam and Burma/Myanmar have developed or are in the process of developing disaster risk reduction strategies and legal frameworks and action plans. Implementation of the HFA will remain the reference for DG ECHO, and the Seventh DIPECHO Action Plan will enhance reporting against the HFA priorities and indicators. Partners will be requested to include this element in their proposals.
adequate preparedness measures, contributing to the death toll of about 144 000 people, made the government and communities more receptive to disaster preparedness. This is the reason why this Action Plan will also support individual projects in Burma/Myanmar.
3.7. Latin America, the Caribbean and the Pacific
These regions are recurrently affected by natural hazards such as floods, hurricanes, droughts, cold waves, landslides, volcanic eruptions or earthquakes.
The year began with probably the most severe disaster to have hit the region in terms of lives lost -- the devastating earthquake that hit Haiti on 12 January. An estimated 230 000 people were killed and more than 2 million were displaced out of a total population of 9.8 million. DG ECHO's response to the massive needs was quick and significant. One month later the region was again hit by a massive earthquake which occurred in Chile on 27 February. It was the fifth most powerful earthquake on record and triggered a tsunami, affecting more than two million people and killing more than 400.
The 2010 hurricane season particularly affected Central America and the Caribbean. Tropical storm Agatha in Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras and hurricane Tomas in the Caribbean required humanitarian assistance. The phenomena of El Niño and La Niña led to warming and cooling in the eastern and central Pacific respectively and caused floods and droughts. This phenomenon led to drought in many Central American countries but particularly affected Guatemala, which required food assistance so as to address the nutritional situation of the most vulnerable. Heavy rains caused floods and landslides in the highlands of southern Peru, affecting more than 190 000 people. At the end of the year, the Bolivian region of El Chaco was still facing the consequences of a third consecutive year of drought, which had led to a critical situation in terms of access to water for agriculture, livestock and human consumption. Floods caused huge damage in Colombia in 2010, as almost 2.3 million people were affected by the rainy season countrywide. DG ECHO responded to all these situations throughout the year.
DG ECHO's humanitarian assistance to victims of Colombia's prolonged internal conflict continued in 2010, including support to IDPs, rural populations facing restriction of movement and limited access to basic goods and services, and Colombians in need of protection who had fled to neighbouring countries.
Linking relief, rehabilitation and development (LRRD) was considered in all operations funded, by developing a strategy that goes beyond the mere distribution of assets to beneficiaries and systematically integrates components to increase the durability of the response and the reinforcement of local disaster preparedness capacities. The involvement of local and national institutions in the definition of priorities and formulation of projects is encouraged. Moreover, DG ECHO works closely with all EU Delegations in the region and at headquarters level, sharing information, carrying out joint monitoring missions and facilitating opportunities for complementarity.
3.7.1. Latin America
Latin America is a region prone to natural disasters; it was hit by tropical storm Agatha, the tsunami in Chile, heavy rains and drought.
Table - Breakdown of funding (commitments) for Latin America
Humanitarian aidFood AidDipechoTotal
Central America3 000 00010 000 00013 000 000
Guatemala1 000 0001 000 000
Chile3 000 0003 000 000
Peru2 000 0002 000 000
Bolivia1 500 0001 500 000
Colombia14 000 00014 000 000
TOTAL 24 500 00010 000 00034 500 000
Central America (Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama)
DG ECHO actions in Central America focused in 2010 on responding to the emergency needs caused by tropical storm Agatha in Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras. A primary emergency decision allocating 3 million was adopted and a total of 206 260 people benefited from DG ECHO-funded operations.
This was supplemented by another decision allocating 1 million to Guatemala, adopted at the end of the year with the aim of responding to the effects of the series of natural disasters which occurred throughout 2010 (Pacaya volcano eruption, tropical storm Agatha, tropical depression 11-E, etc.) and had substantially eroded the coping capacity of the most vulnerable populations. Harvest losses seriously affected subsistence farmers, while opportunities to work as day labourers on bigger farms diminished because of the floods.
Local communities are particularly vulnerable to all these disasters, and the losses they cause are significant in both social and economic terms. The capacities of Central American countries to cope with disasters are insufficient and international assistance is needed to support preparedness and small-scale mitigation actions.
Hydro-meteorological events have been predominant in recent years, with floods affecting more than 2.2 million people since 1990. Over the same period, more than 5 million people have been hit by windstorms, most notoriously by hurricanes Mitch
33, Stan and Felix in 1998,
2005 and 2007 respectively. Hydro-meteorological events are responsible for 82 % of the total loss of human life caused by all types of disasters over the period 1990-2009 in the region
Geological events and, more specifically, earthquakes generate the most significant economic losses. For example, the two earthquakes which hit El Salvador in 2001 affected a total of 1.5 million people
35.Finally, deforestation is a frequent problem, and events such as the El Niño
phenomenon aggravate its consequences. The drought induced by El Niño in 1997-1998 caused losses of forests (due to fires) corresponding to four years of deforestation
The Seventh DIPECHO Action Plan ( 10 million) will target the most vulnerable local communities and their institutions involved in risk reduction in El Salvador, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama. Furthermore, regional programming could take into account the whole of Central America.
It is estimated that approximately 800 000 people benefit directly from the Seventh Action Plan.
South America (except Colombia)
One of the most powerful earthquakes in history and a subsequent tsunami hit Chile on 27 February, affecting more than two million people and killing more than 400. The Commission disbursed 3 million through a primary emergency decision to assist 75 000 people, mainly by supporting healthcare and shelter.
Commissioner Georgieva travelled to Chile to visit the areas most affected by the earthquake and tsunami and observe the work of European humanitarian and civil protection experts on the ground. During her field visit she met representatives of ECHO partners working in the area, visited the Monitoring and Information Centre (MIC) base-camp in Penco, Concepción, and had bilateral contacts with Chilean authorities in the region. Commissioner Georgieva's visit coincided with the inauguration of President Sebastián Piñera in Valparaíso on 11 March and she represented President Barroso at the ceremony.
At the end of the year, the Bolivian region of El Chaco was still facing the consequences of a third consecutive year of drought, which had led to a critical situation in terms of access to water for agriculture, livestock and human consumption. Agricultural losses were reported to be higher than 90 %. Through an ad hoc decision allocating 1.5 million, DG ECHO helped vulnerable indigenous families to recover their livelihoods and access to water as well as to increase their resilience to droughts.
Furthermore, three projects were funded in South America in 2010 to cover some remaining humanitarian gaps following the earthquake in Chile, respond to the floods in Venezuela and support the victims of the landslides in Bolivia.
The strategy adopted by DG ECHO in 2010 has been to frame a common approach and strategy together with its partners for each emergency so that all projects fit together and share objectives and results, thus multiplying the impact of the funding decision and ensuring coherence between DG ECHO-funded projects in the same response. This was the case in the response to the Peru floods and Bolivia drought.
As far as disaster preparedness is concerned, implementation of the Sixth DIPECHO Action Plan for South America came to an end in the last quarter of 2010.
Colombia (including Colombians in need of international protection in Ecuador and Venezuela)
Internal armed conflict in Colombia continued in 2010. Despite government military advances over illegal armed groups, massive and individual displacements, confinement of civilians and weapon contamination continued to be major consequences of the conflict in Colombia. While the government reported decreasing levels of forced displacements in 2010, humanitarian needs remained a cause of concern, particularly in rural zones affected by armed confrontations and in border zones. In cumulative terms (and depending on the source), between 3.5
37 and 4.9 million38 people have been displaced since 1984. And the phenomenon
of confined, or blocked, communities persists39. According to the UNHCR, around 500 00040
determination) and emergency assistance for new arrivals remain the most important humanitarian issues to be addressed.
In addition, Colombia is vulnerable to natural disasters; floods in particular caused huge damage in 2010. Almost 2.3 million
42 people were affected by the rainy season countrywide;
despite the efforts of the Colombian government to respond to the humanitarian needs, national capacity was overwhelmed. An appeal for humanitarian assistance was made to the international community and the private sector on 23 November.
Funding of 14 million was allocated to support the Colombian population affected by the conflict and the emergency provoked by the heavy rainy season in 2010. Around 198 000 people were assisted by DG ECHO under the Global Plan for Colombia 2010 (IDPs and affected populations in Colombia: 123 000; asylum seekers and refugees in Ecuador and
Venezuela: 38 000; Colombians affected by recent floods: 37 000).
Protection has been the main objective of DG ECHO's operation in Colombia. DG ECHO continued to concentrate humanitarian operations in remote rural areas, where state institutions are generally not present or government assistance is not sufficient. The protection of children, women and minorities continued to be a priority. DG ECHO assistance was intended to cover those humanitarian emergency needs not -- sufficiently -- covered by the aid provided by the Colombian government, and ensure humanitarian protection as much as possible.
In line with Colombia's policy of `democratic security', a presidential directive was issued in March 2009, seeking the `alignment' of armed forces and civilian state entities. As a result of this directive, an increasing number of mixed civil-military brigades have been organised, blurring civil and military lines and therefore further limiting the humanitarian space of government agencies in 2009 and 2010. Respecting the humanitarian principle of independence, DG ECHO partners have refused to participate in these mixed brigades.
Commissioner Georgieva travelled to Haiti in early March to visit the areas most affected by the earthquake. During her field visit she visited humanitarian projects and displacement camps, met representatives of ECHO partners working in Port-au-Prince, flew over the devastated cities of Léogâne and Jacmel and held high-level meetings with the Humanitarian Coordinator and the Canadian Armed Forces and Ambassador. She then joined Catherine Ashton for a meeting with President Préval and Prime Minister Bellerive.
In October, a cholera epidemic started in the valley of the Artibonite, quickly spreading to other departments. It was compounded by hurricane Tomas in early November, which brought heavy rains and disturbed the provision of water and healthcare during a short period.
At the end of the year, 3 573 people had died of cholera, out of 160 929 cases seen and 90 076 hospitalised, representing a 2.2 % lethality rate. This was an improvement on the 10 % rate at the beginning of the epidemic but was still significantly above the 1 % internationally recommended threshold.
DG ECHO's response to the earthquake was quick and significant. A total of 122 million was allocated to respond to the massive needs in the sectors of shelter, food, water/sanitation/hygiene, health, coordination/logistics and to enhance disaster risk reduction, which was also mainstreamed in the whole response operation. The Commission financed projects not only in Port-au-Prince, targeting populations in camps and staying in tents close to their damaged homes, but also in the rest of the country, where significant numbers of displaced people sought refuge in the aftermath of the earthquake, staying with relatives and host families and thereby depleting their already scarce resources. In addition to the 2010 funding, funds remaining from the 2009 Global Plan ( 8 million) were reallocated to the response to the earthquake.
DG ECHO also responded very quickly to the cholera epidemic, focusing on the health sector to save lives through medical treatment, the provision of clean water and adequate sanitation, and support for epidemiological surveillance and logistics.
A financing decision was adopted towards the end of 2010, to provide support for building regional capacity in disaster preparedness and climate change adaptation in the Pacific region. Actions are being developed in the context of existing regional and national Disaster Risk Reduction frameworks, including National Disaster Management structures. Activities include capacity-building of organisations with a disaster risk reduction mandate; institutional linkages and advocacy, targeting institutions involved in disaster management/disaster risk reduction, including contingency planning; development and dissemination of standardised tools and systems for Information, Education and Communication; stock-building of emergency and relief items at local level; reinforcing the early response capacity of local actors and institutions in disaster-prone areas by providing rescue and first aid equipment plus training activities; piloting, documentation and promotion of "climate change adaptation disaster preparedness" integrated approaches.
In order to be able to intervene in new `small-scale' crises three funding decisions with a worldwide scope were adopted in 2010:
Table - Breakdown of funding (commitments) for the Worldwide decisions
Humanitarian AidFood Aid DipechoTotal
Epidemics10 000 00010 000 000
Small scale response8 000 0008 000 000
Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF)3 000 0003 000 000
TOTAL 21 000 00021 000 000
Epidemic outbreaks pose major risks to the world's poorest populations, because they are less able to respond to shocks of all kinds. The vaccination coverage in developing countries is generally low and the risk of transmission of infections is thus enhanced. Poverty, lack of basic sanitation facilities, low hygienic standards and malnutrition in post-emergency or structurally weak countries increase the vulnerability to communicable diseases. Populations already affected by natural and man-made disasters are particularly vulnerable. A timely and adequate response to epidemic outbreaks, combined with appropriate preparedness action, can help save thousands of lives.
3.8.2. Small-scale response
Small-scale disasters often occur in remote or isolated areas, rarely trigger a declaration of emergency and do not usually figure prominently in the news despite the serious humanitarian needs they create locally.
In 2010, the Commission allocated 8 million from its humanitarian budget to provide small- scale assistance for disaster preparedness and relief to victims of natural or man-made disasters throughout the globe. This allocation will facilitate appropriate emergency response funding where the local response is insufficient, be it to small-scale disasters or disasters of a somewhat larger scale where there are unmet humanitarian needs, and for which a small-scale operation is adequate. It will be the tool to allow a rapid response to those disasters where the number of affected people is low, or the unmet needs are not significant enough to launch a specific decision.
At least one of the following two criteria must be fulfilled:
extent of damage: the number of affected people is less than 50 000;
unmet needs (gaps left by ongoing assistance), where an operation limited to a maximum
amount of 200 000 per disaster is sufficient to cover unmet needs.
As for other DG ECHO operations, funds are channelled through NGOs, international organisations including the United Nations (UN agencies) and Member States' specialised agencies.
3.8.3. The IFRC's Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF)
Vulnerable people in non-EU countries throughout the world are affected by disasters, such as floods, landslides, cyclones, tsunamis, drought, fires, cold waves, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, epidemics, food insecurity, population movements and civil unrest. Relief is required, as well as preparedness for imminent disasters, in the context of small-scale emergencies for which an appeal is unlikely to be launched. Most small-scale emergencies (sometimes no more than 100 000 people are affected) are responded to at local or national level. The Red Cross and Red Crescent National Societies, supported by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), are often best placed to provide an immediate response, being rooted in the local community and mobilising community members as volunteers.
prone regions in the world. In DG ECHO terminology, this is called the `community-based approach'.
Since launching the DIPECHO programmes (1996-2010), the Commission has invested 300 million in the associated action plans.
Besides the DIPECHO action plans, mainstreaming activities contribute also to disaster preparedness. The effort is based on activities related to the following sectors: infrastructure support, capacity building and training, advocacy and public awareness, small-scale mitigation, mapping and data computerisation, early warning systems, education, facilitation and coordination, institutional strengthening and climate change adaptation activities.
In 2010, disaster preparedness activities managed by DG ECHO allowed about 28 million beneficiaries to be reached.
Disaster Preparedness Activities 1996-2010
Region FundingFunding Funding
Southern Africa5.735.0006.000.00011 735 000
Southern Caucasus/Eastern Europe4.703.3574 703 357
Central Asia22.375.0007.295.00029 670 000
South Asia31.753.04331 753 043
South-East Asia31.680.00010.000.00041 680 000
Central America32.480.00010.000.00042 480 000
South America36.227.66336 227 663
Peru2.000.0002 000 000
Caribbean25.178.15625 178 156
Pacific1.500.0001 500 000
Other 4.245.3814 245 381
Other - Capacity-building200.000 200 000
Total DIPECHO programmes198 077 60033 295 000231 372 600
3.10. Linking relief, rehabilitation and development (LRRD)
In 2010, following rising demand from countries providing external assistance in transition contexts, LRRD issues received increased attention from humanitarian and development actors.
The growing complexity and duration of crises led to a situation where numerous international actors in the areas of humanitarian aid, recovery, development and peacekeeping have been working side by side, making proper interlinking and close coordination (from needs assessment through to actual implementation of operations) critical.
While managing transition and LRRD has proven to be a challenge for country desk officers and personnel in the field in different contexts (such as in Haiti and Pakistan), DG ECHO has been working on ensuring improved coordination and consistency at policy and operational level.
In order to improve coordination, a shared analysis of the needs of beneficiary populations is fundamental. For this reason, DG ECHO has been involved in the Post Disaster Needs Assessments (PDNA) approach led by the EU, the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the World Bank (in Haiti). There is still a need to ensure consistency between operations in transition contexts and the outcomes of such exercises.
From a humanitarian perspective, the integration of humanitarian-related activities (such as activities aimed at prevention and risk reduction) into the development agenda is a fundamental step towards the reduction of vulnerability of disaster-prone countries and regions.
DG ECHO has also been engaged (with the Commission services in charge of development)
in the development of Joint Framework aimed at ensuring coherence between humanitarian and development operations addressing different levels of vulnerabilities in transition contexts, while respecting the different principles, decision-making processes and implementation methods.
The DG ECHO Office in Ethiopia constantly works with the EU Delegation (in particular the Rural Development and Food Security Section) and other donors in order to pursue LRRD. Nevertheless, the level of success in this regard is not as such considered impressive due to the different natures of the funding instruments. The Humanitarian Donors Coordination Group, in which DG ECHO plays a key role, was consolidated in 2010. Among the humanitarian donors those involved are OFDA
departments has resulted in several new multi-sectoral programmes in the health, post-conflict rural development and food security sectors. Coordination on LRRD and other matters is also being pursued with other development players, including the DFID, the CTB, Swiss and German Cooperation, the World Bank and GAVI (Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation). Ongoing and enhanced synergy between these programmes has made it possible to progressively reduce humanitarian aid to Burundians in health, food security and water and sanitation.
South Sudan, with its post-conflict context characterised both by urgent humanitarian needs and by structural deficiencies requiring the engagement of development actors, has a high potential for successful links between relief, recovery and development efforts. The process is, however, fraught with obstacles, linked to the sheer magnitude of development needs, a significant lack of local capacity, insecurity and slow disbursement of funding. However, DG ECHO continues to support the transition towards development, for example by insisting on the quality and sustainability of the operations funded, the inclusion of capacity building components and advocacy.
In 2010 the Commission made distinct progress in improving the complementarity between development assistance and humanitarian aid in Southern Sudan. As a consequence of its non- ratification of the revised Cotonou Agreement, Sudan is ineligible for funding from the 10th EDF, which risked compromising the LRRD process. Eventually, two measures were adopted to address this potential gap: firstly, 15 million from the Instrument for Stability (IfS) was mobilised, out of which 8.15 million was allocated for funding basic services. Secondly, 150 million of decommitted money from the 9th EDF was made available for programmes in Sudan. Activities funded or to be funded by these measures complement the operations of DG ECHO in Southern Sudan, and all departments concerned are working closely together to ensure as many synergies as possible.
Much effort was put in 2010 into encouraging improved coordination with other Commission departments and other donors present in the Sahel. NGO partners were encouraged to work more closely together and their willingness and ability to do this was taken into consideration in funding decisions. The interlinking of aid instruments in a coherent and coordinated LRRD aid strategy for addressing nutrition issues is a priority goal. DG ECHO actively participated in the many recent initiatives on nutrition promoted by major institutional donors, including EU Member States, the UN family, the World Bank and US aid agencies.
assistance strategy was refocused to take account of the serious deterioration in the public health sector, where a two-pronged approach sought to tackle health emergencies, on the one hand, and mitigate the collapse and signal the recovery of the delivery of basic services to the population, on the other. This approach was designed to be coherent with, and complementary to, the strategy of the EU Delegation, with both entities coming together in funding the provision of essential medicines. The Water Emergency Response Unit and Health Emergency Response Unit (WERU and HERU) set up during the massive cholera outbreak of 2008/2009 now provide national coverage, and have been integrated into the cluster system.
In terms of food security, DG ECHO's LRRD strategy of advocating scaling down massive food distributions in favour of food security actions, and reinforcing the complementarities with the EU Delegation and other donors' food security projects, has borne fruit to the extent that DG ECHO will no longer support food security/livelihoods actions as of mid-2011.
As the situation in the country has moved from emergency to transition, DG ECHO participated in inter-service missions to shape the Commission's Short-Term Strategy for Zimbabwe (now in its third phase), itself reflecting the priorities of the Short-Term Economic Recovery Plan (STERP) established in February 2008 by the then new Government of National Unity. The STS fully pursues the link between relief, rehabilitation and development.
The LRRD strategy has also been applied to humanitarian coordination mechanisms, with clusters being established (and supported by DG ECHO), and moving steadily away from a pure humanitarian towards a programmatic, quasi-developmental approach. This is evidenced in the fact that the latest Consolidated Appeals Process (CAP) is, rightly in view of the circumstances, much more a transitional than a humanitarian instrument. A further step should be the disappearance of the CAP in Zimbabwe altogether, in favour of a government- led process.
In the current context, DG ECHO's strategy has also to maintain an emphasis on including potential development donors in order to have them take over as of 2011-2012, in order to allow DG ECHO to establish a proper exit strategy. The trigger for moving forward in the transition process will be the holding of free, fair and peaceful elections in Zimbabwe (now planned for 2011), which in turn would undoubtedly encourage donors to release substantial long-term funding.
3.11. Civil protection
Table - Breakdown of funding (commitments) for Civil Protection
Civil Protection inside the EU14 406 872
EU rapid response capability - Preparatory action6 846 101
Civil Protection outside the EU6 807 793
TOTAL 28 060 766
The Commission engaged in a number of activities to fully implement the EU framework for the prevention of disasters
50.Within this framework, on 21 December the Commission issued
a guidance paper on national risk assessment and mapping for disaster management, which was developed together with the national authorities of the Member States
focus on the processes and methods of risk assessment as carried out within the broader framework of risk management and risk mitigation and are based on a multi-hazard and multi- risk approach, covering in principle all natural and man-made disasters. They also propose definitions of the most important terms, based on ISO and UN/ISDR terminology. In addition, definitions for the major impact categories are proposed. Strong emphasis is put on using empirical quantitative methods as far as possible. It is now expected that Member States will further develop national risk management processes, in the context of which they would make use of those guidelines. On the basis of information to be provided by Member States by the end of 2011, the Commission will in 2012 produce an overview of the major risks faced by the EU.
The Commission is also working towards improving its knowledge base on disasters and encouraging effective and greater investment in disaster prevention. With regard to disaster prevention, the following issues were identified as deserving further consideration
Actions were also developed with the European Environment Agency (EEA) to encourage better information and comparability of disaster data, such as information on the costs of disasters. The results of this work will contribute to development of the adaptation to climate change Clearing House Mechanism.
The Commission is also actively ensuring linkages with the initiatives developed by the United Nations' International Strategy for Disaster Reduction secretariat (UN/ISDR) implementing the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA). The Commission took part in and contributed to the annual meeting of European national platforms and HFA focal points, the `European Forum for Disaster Risk Reduction'. Synergies are ensured with the ongoing work
at EU level.
In 2010 the Civil Protection Financial Instrument financed, on the basis of an annual call for proposals for prevention projects, nine projects in the area of prevention. The projects will be implemented in 2011 and 2012, with a total EU contribution of 2.8 million (75 % cofinancing rate). Three prevention projects were successfully completed in 2010, with the focus on the following areas: (1) prevention of fires; (2) linking civil protection and planning for preventing disasters in Europe and (3) prevention of natural risks in the Mediterranean region, with a focus on seismic risks.
Preparedness activities seek to contribute to reaching a state of readiness and capability of human and material means enabling them to ensure an effective rapid response to an emergency, obtained as a result of action taken in advance
53.Early Warning Systems,
modules and the Civil Protection Mechanism's training programme are essential parts of those activities. In addition, the Commission gave financial support to a number of preparedness cooperation projects.
(1) Several Early Warning Systems were financially supported in 2010, including:
· EFAS (European Floods Alert System), which provides early warning of floods in Europe.
(2) Member States are to identify in advance modules54 that might be available for
intervention or could be established at very short notice and dispatched, generally within 12 hours following a request for assistance. As civil protection modules should be capable of working self-sufficiently for a given period of time, general requirements for self-sufficiency and, where appropriate, specific requirements that may vary according to the type of intervention or the type of module concerned are established at EU level so that Participating States know in advance the features to be met by the modules they offer on a voluntary basis for participating in an EU civil protection assistance intervention
55.In 2010, those
requirements were partially changed with respect to the `Aerial forest fire fighting using airplanes' and `Field hospital' modules
56.In addition, recent civil protection operations
demonstrated the need to add and implement four new types of civil protection modules to reinforce the civil protection rapid response capability, namely the `Ground forest fire fighting', `Ground forest fire fighting using vehicles', `Flood containment' and `Flood rescue using boats' modules
As of 31 December, participating States had registered in the Mechanism's Common Emergency Communication and Information System (CECIS) 17 different modules, such as Water purification, Aerial forest fire fighting using airplanes and Field hospitals.
(3) The Mechanism's training programme aims to enhance the coordination of civil protection assistance intervention by ensuring compatibility and complementarity between the intervention teams and modules, and by improving the competence of the experts to be deployed on-site as members of an EU assessment and coordination team. The programme comprises joint courses and exercises (including exercises involving modules) and an exchange system whereby individuals may be seconded to other Member States.
· Training courses
In 2010 873 persons took part in the 12 types of training courses offered by selected civil protection organisations. Altogether 49 courses were organised in 2010. These types of training courses are offered to eligible personnel from Participating States' civil protection organisations and UN personnel. The experts participating in the training programme can become part of EU Civil Protection Teams deployed in the event of an emergency within and outside the EU (42 experts deployed in 2010).
were selected which focused on the following areas: a chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear (CBRN) accident affecting public places and a passenger sea line accident.
· Exercises with modules
One table-top and two field exercises took place in 2010 and were supplemented by five basic courses on modules that are part of the training programme, with the total participation of 126 participants.
(4) In 2010, the Civil Protection Financial Instrument financed three preparedness projects in the following areas:
· Water pollution on the boundary between Bulgaria and Greece;
· Legal conditions for the provision of disaster assistance in the EU and selected Member
· Improvement of the Meteoalarm early warning system for 30 European countries, by
extending the forecast period to five days and including rain and flood warnings.
3.11.3. The civil protection response
In 2010 the European Civil Protection Mechanism was activated 12 times in order to respond to emergencies within the EU
58 and 20 times for emergencies occurring outside EU borders59.
Although the total number of activations was in line with that of 2009, 2010 will be remembered as a year in which the world experienced a series of particularly devastating disasters. On a global scale the Mechanism was called upon to react to two of the worst natural disasters in recent decades, i.e. the Haiti earthquake and the Pakistan floods, and in response to the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon drilling well in the Gulf of Mexico, which resulted in the most environmentally damaging oil spill on record. Europe and its immediate neighbours were also severely affected, with the Mechanism being activated for numerous tragic events ranging from the alkali sludge incident that damaged flora/fauna and agricultural land in Hungary, through flash floods and severe storms in Western Europe, large-scale floods in Central Europe, volcanic ash clouds, to unprecedented forest fires in Russia.
received as a result of earthquakes (2 activations), oil spills (2 activations), heavy snowfall (2 activations), environmental disasters (1 activation) and volcanic eruptions (1 activation).
More information on the 2010 activations can be found in the overview below:
3.12. Case studies on launching humanitarian aid and civil protection
3.12.1. Humanitarian aid -- Sudan
With a size three times that of Switzerland, Jonglei state is the biggest of the ten states in Southern Sudan, and is prone to inter- and intra-tribal clashes such as cattle raiding or clan fighting, resulting every year in thousands of people being displaced.
After the general elections in April 2010 another conflict erupted in Jonglei. Fighting between two parties both claiming the post of Governor in Jonglei resulted in a large number of IDPs.
Khorfulus Boma, a small village by the river in northern Jonglei, was reported to have received the highest number of displaced persons, 6 246 people. Medair, an NGO working in Southern Sudan since 1992, conducted a needs assessment in the water and sanitation sector, which was reported to be the predominant concern. With only one safe water point (a manual filtration system), the local population mainly used untreated river water. Medair's assessment revealed that the most appropriate system to serve a large number of people with good and safe drinking water would be a SWAT (surface water treatment) system using the nearby river. The system could be set up quickly and operated by the local population after only three weeks of training. As a result of this rapid reaction both local residents and people displaced by the conflict gained access to safe drinking water, which significantly reduced their vulnerability to water-borne diseases.
Medair, with the support of DG ECHO, aids victims of man-made and natural disasters in Southern Sudan by providing medical assistance and access to water and sanitation services. In 2010 alone Medair helped 166 541 people through 18 rapid response actions across ten states of Southern Sudan.
3.12.2. Humanitarian aid -- floods in Pakistan
In the course of the 2010 monsoon season, Pakistan experienced the worst floods in living memory. Heavy rainfall, flash floods and riverine floods combined to create a moving body of water equal in dimension to the land mass of the United Kingdom. The floods affected 84 out of a total of 121 districts in Pakistan and almost 20 million people -- about 10 % of the total population, devastating villages from the Himalayas to the Arabian Sea. Occurring only a year after a massive population displacement described as the most significant in the region since partition in 1947, which had already resulted in almost 3 million people displaced, the floods were classed on 6 August as the worst natural disaster in Pakistan's 63-year history by Prime Minister Gilani, who appealed for international help.
South. A strong focus was given to food assistance with cash based assistance whenever possible and appropriate.
This disaster has, once more, confirmed the pertinence of and need to include disaster risk reduction in humanitarian aid and development cooperation in countries that are highly prone to natural disasters such as Pakistan.
3.12.3. Humanitarian aid -- Bolivia: support to drought-affected communities in Chaco
In October, the EU allocated 1.5 million to provide humanitarian assistance to the most vulnerable people affected by droughts in the Bolivian Chaco. This drought response is multi-sectoral and is expected to help at least 25 000 beneficiaries among the most vulnerable people in the affected region. Drought response in Bolivia combines several elements, highlighting the need to intervene with a multi-sector approach in slow disaster-affected environments and the importance of mainstreaming disaster risk reduction measures in all activities so as to improve the communities' resilience to future events.
This area had been experiencing record high temperatures and longer than average periods without rainfall for three consecutive years since 2008. The cumulative impact of drought reached its most critical level in the 2010 dry season and was seriously affecting the human population, livestock and agricultural activity, generating emergency humanitarian and recovery needs. The humanitarian response in such contexts requires an integrated approach in order to reduce communities' vulnerability in a sustainable manner. Humanitarian and recovery needs in terms of safe water access, food and livelihood were addressed in such a way as to ensure an appropriate balance between short- term emergency distributions and mid-term resilience support. Measures in the following sectors were designed in an integrated manner:
Water: delivery of water trucking, water catchment rehabilitation, water storage facilities and water
management training with communities and authorities;
Food: staple commodities for the human population;
Livelihood support: distribution of seeds together with rehabilitation of soils and improvement of
production and post-harvesting practices as well as distribution of vitamins, salts, veterinary treatments and water, in order to prevent high losses in food security sources;
Disaster risk reduction (DRR): apart from the DRR impact of several sector activities listed
above, the design also includes DRR-specific activities, such as training of communities and authorities in basic DRR skills, coordination support and advocacy. ECHO partners plan to provide at the end of the intervention a methodological proposal for communities, authorities and aid agencies based on best practices compiled during the humanitarian response.
became immediately operational thanks to excellent cooperation with the ECHO office on site, which provided administrative and transport support. Among other things, the team coordinated the arrival of assistance by identifying consignees and ensuring that it reached the final destination. The several hundred tonnes of civil protection assistance deployed by 18 of the States participating in the Mechanism represented a valuable and highly needed contribution to the overall relief effort in line with identified needs (assistance included water purification tablets/units, water distribution equipment, field hospitals, emergency health kits, medical supplies, non-food items (NFIs), shelter items, high energy food supplements and power generators).
In terms of transport, the Mechanism offered rapid transport solutions and established an air bridge to deliver assistance to Pakistan. Of the 14 flights arranged, 11 were facilitated through the MIC and cofinanced by the Commission Civil Protection Instrument, while the remaining 3 were made possible by close collaboration with the EU Movement Planning Cell (EU Military Staff -- EUMS), in line with the 2006 cooperation agreements and international (in particular Oslo) guidelines. Overall, transport arrangements functioned well and cooperation with the EUMS showed that they are an important partner for the future.
In addition to the generous and rapid provision of civil protection assistance, the Pakistan floods also highlighted the complementarities that exist between the Civil Protection Mechanism and the humanitarian aid branch of DG ECHO. The fruitful collaboration with humanitarian aid colleagues, at both headquarter and field level, was undoubtedly one of the keys to success. The integration of humanitarian aid and civil protection under the same political and administrative leadership not only provided benefits in terms of financing, coordination and implementation of the EU's overall response but also significantly improved the flow and exchange of information among relevant actors.
3.12.5. Civil protection -- Poland floods
In May Poland activated the European Civil Protection Mechanism in order to respond to floods caused by heavy rainfall and the consequent swelling of the Vistula, Oder and Warta river basins. The EU civil protection response was swift with over 55 pumps, 22 expert teams and 300 rescuers being deployed by eight European countries. The emergency also saw the successful deployment of an EU- cofinanced multinational high capacity pumping module (Balt Flood Combat Module) developed by Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania under the Preparatory Action for an EU Rapid Response Capability. Interaction among team members was good and the three high capacity pumps which make up the module were positioned in various areas affected by flooding along the Vistula River. Operations lasted almost 13 days with approximately 295 Olympic-size swimming pools of flood water being removed.
relationship with its stakeholders and has put in place various monitoring and coordination mechanisms. Some of their key features are described below.
4.1. Aid delivery methods
The EU is the only humanitarian donor to have a worldwide network of field experts who play a key role in assessing humanitarian needs and monitoring EU-funded operations. The aid itself is implemented by a limited number of humanitarian organisations, which have both the financial and the operational capacity to manage emergency operations in often difficult circumstances.
4.1.1. Experts in the field
The Commission manages its humanitarian activities from its headquarters in Brussels via a network of more than 40 field offices all over the world.
In order to meet the target set by the post-tsunami action plan of January 2005, the Commission has consolidated its network of field experts with the aim of organising multi- sectoral rapid response teams. This allows it to dispatch its field experts and programme assistants rapidly in response to new crises to carry out humanitarian needs assessments and help coordinate humanitarian activities in the field.
By the end of 2010, more than 100 experts and 300 local staff were in place in 44 field offices. New field offices had been opened in Port au Prince (Haiti) and Gaza, the office in Islamabad (Pakistan) had been reopened, the existing regional office in Bangkok (Thailand) had been extended and activities in the Beirut and Moscow offices had been reduced.
4.1.2. Relations with partners
The Commission does not intervene directly on the ground, but implements its mandate by funding about 200 partners ranging from non-governmental organisations, United Nations agencies, other international organisations such as the International Committee of the Red Cross and the International Federation of the Red Cross and the Red Crescent Societies, to specialised agencies of EU Member States.
There are mainly three types of partners: international organisations, UN agencies and NGOs.
In 2010 the relative share of these organisations in the funding provided by DG ECHO was
NGOs: 50 %, UN organisations: 39 % and international organisations: 11 %. The graph below provides an overview of the funding by category of partners over the last three years:
Funding by category of partners (2008-2010)
1 1 1%
The share of funding that went to NGOs increased from 44 % in 2008 to 50 % in 2010, whereas over the same time period the share of funding taken by the UN decreased from 46 %
to 39 %. In 2008 the percentage of funding allocated to the UN was particularly high due to the food crisis, for which operations were mainly implemented by UN partners (WFP). The 2010 figures are again in line with figures before the food crisis.
The top 10 partners receive over 50 % of DG ECHO funding for humanitarian operations60.
4.2. Coordination of humanitarian funds
Various mechanisms are in place to ensure that the humanitarian funds provided by DG ECHO are coordinated with those of other humanitarian actors involved in responses:
· Coordination with Member States is ensured through regular meetings with their
· Coordination with NGOs is ensured through a dedicated network (VOICE) and the
organisation of an annual conference with partners.
· An IT application has been developed to collect data on humanitarian aid funding by the
EU and Member States (called the 14-points application). This database63, which is
accessible to anyone64, gives the total EU (EU + Member States) humanitarian assistance
provided by year and country. The system is linked to the Financial Tracking System (FTS) of OCHA
The core objective of the 14-points application is to cover all humanitarian aid contributions, whichever government department is responsible for them. The definition of what constitutes humanitarian aid -- and therefore should be reported -- is a difficult question and Member States have developed their own working definitions.
In 2010, humanitarian aid contributions totalling 2 756 million were reported in
DG ECHO's 14-points application, of which 60 % were from Member States and 40 % from EU funds.
Member EU Huma-
EU EU Food
EU Civil EU Technical
37%Caribbean & Pacific
4%Middle East &
Geographic breakdown of MS and EU humanitarian aid contributions
Overall, largely the same countries benefited from humanitarian aid from the Member States and from the EU. The two mega-disasters that occurred in 2010 (Pakistan and Haiti) are the main recipients of EU assistance (EU + MS), representing 26 % of the aid provided during the year. Beside this, the two complex crises dating back to previous years (Sudan and DR Congo) accounted for 15 % of the EU assistance (EU + MS).
AfricaCentral AsiaCaribbeanMiddle East
Top 10 beneficiaries -- geographic breakdown of MS and EU humanitarian aid contributions
4.3.1. The 2010 work programme
Each year, an indicative Evaluation Programme is established after a consultative process within DG ECHO and with the Humanitarian Aid Committee. This programme is flexible and can be adapted to include evaluations not scheduled in the initial programme, in response to particular events or changing circumstances.
DG ECHO's mandate to evaluate is set out in Article 18 of the Humanitarian Aid Regulation, which requires the Commission to `regularly assess humanitarian aid operations financed by the [European Union] in order to establish whether they have achieved their objectives and to produce guidelines for improving the effectiveness of subsequent operations'.
in the first part of the year, the Evaluation sector had to re-prioritise the programme in line with DG ECHO's evolving needs.
In 2010, 1766 evaluations, reviews and follow-up contracts were finalised or launched:
Twelve evaluations: Iraqi crisis, air transport, Nepal, Burmese refugee camps in Thailand,
Sahel, Kenya, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Uganda and Zimbabwe, plus two that were not initially planned and were added in line with operational
needs: real-time evaluation in Haiti and civil protection evaluation.
Three reviews/studies with a core focus on DG ECHO's policy development priorities: air
transport at field level, the unit cost approach and the European Voluntary Humanitarian Aid Corps (EVHAC) review.
Two follow-up contracts: air transport and the EVHAC.
4.3.2. Results of some evaluations finalised in 2010
-The Evaluation of the provision of air transport in support of humanitarian operations concluded that each service has its advantages and disadvantages, which will be more or less significant according to the context. In particular, the ECHO Flight service remains effective, highly regarded, visible and relatively cost-efficient.
-According to the Evaluation of DG ECHO's assistance to vulnerable groups affected by the crisis in the Central African Republic during the period 2007 2010, DG ECHO performed well in responding to the humanitarian needs. Its operations remained flexible to a changing situation in all areas of the country and its support allowed partner organisations to respond on the basis of need, within their capabilities.
-The Evaluation of DG ECHO's actions in the Democratic Republic of the Congo identified the major impact of DG ECHO's activity in this conflict area and made operational recommendations for the improvement of protection-oriented activities.
4.4. Control of the use of funds
4.4.1. Internal control
Correct implementation of EU-funded operations is ensured by several layers of checks at various stages of the project cycle for humanitarian operations. The main aspects of the control strategy developed by the Commission, the supervision and monitoring procedures and the ex-ante and ex-post controls are described below and comprise:
· Strict selection and quality control mechanisms for partners under the Framework
Partnership Agreement (FPA) signed with NGOs and international organisations67 that
specify the financial credentials and expertise required of implementing partners, combined with both regular and ad hoc assessments of FPA partners in order to ensure that these requirements are met continuously. Financial management and control requirements for UN bodies are laid down in the EU-UN Financial Administrative Framework Agreement (FAFA).
· Strictly needs-based systems for identifying the actions to be funded. These needs
assessments are carried out by the partner organisations and cross-checked/monitored by DG ECHO's technical assistants on the ground.
· Ex-ante controls on the selection of projects and before the signature of contracts.
· Day-to-day monitoring of progress of projects. Each grant and contribution agreement is
monitored by the desk and field expert and the outcome is recorded on a project appraisal worksheet (`fichop').
· Project monitoring by a network of field experts (technical assistants) worldwide. These
specialists are based in the field in order to facilitate operations funded by the EU, regardless of where, and maximise their impact. They closely monitor projects and write regular reports. In order to enhance the rapid reaction capacity and monitoring of operations, the number of field experts has gradually been increased in recent years. Currently about 100 field experts are based in the various field offices.
have not been evaluated in the last three years), partners and thematic issues. The results of these
evaluations can be found on DG ECHO's website at
http://ec.europa.eu/echo/policies/evaluation/introduction_en.htm (see also Section 4.3).
· EU-funded activities implemented by external partners and contractors are subject to a
financial audit. The audit strategy is based on a twin-track approach: audits are performed both at partners' headquarters on a cyclical basis for finalised projects and in the field for ongoing projects.
In 2010, a budget of 2.2 million for contracts with external auditors was allocated to audits.
In terms of work carried out, 62 audits were performed at headquarters; 45 field audits were finalised on projects under way; 4 field office audits were carried out and 5 humanitarian procurement centres were assessed.
Audit recommendations are a valuable channel for feedback for improvements to partners' reporting systems. Furthermore, audit findings on the eligibility of expenditures are analysed by Commission officials and appropriate follow-up action is taken, such as recovery of funds.
The working arrangements for audits performed by DG ECHO are available on the internet at
http://ec.europa.eu/echo/funding/audit_en.htm to inform partners about what they can expect
from audits as well as what the audit team expects from its partners.
DG ECHO also has an Internal Audit and Advice sector (IAC), which provides independent, objective assurance and consulting services designed to add value and improve the operations of the DG. The IAC helps the DG accomplish its objectives by bringing a systematic, disciplined approach in order to evaluate and make recommendations for improving the effectiveness of risk management, control, and governance processes.
The checks listed above should not be seen in isolation. Each of them contributes to providing overall reasonable assurance on the legality and regularity of the transactions.
4.4.2. External control
Every year, the European Parliament and the Council give their opinion on the discharge of past budgets. To this end, the specialised committees of the budget authority exercise control over financial management in EU bodies and organise yearly hearings with the Commissioners concerned. All Commission departments are accountable to the European Parliament and the Council, among other things in annual reports giving details of their activities. Their budget management is also continuously audited by the European Court of Auditors, which reports to the budget authority.
The Court of Auditors audits the EU's finances. Its observations and recommendations are published in its annual report and in special reports to the European Parliament and the European Council. For the 2009 financial year, the Court concluded in its annual report that all the key internal controls of the Commission in relation to humanitarian aid were effective and did not find a material level of errors in DG ECHO transactions. The Court also issued a special report in October 2009 on `EU assistance implemented through United Nations (UN)
organisations: decision-making and monitoring'. The main messages are directed to EuropeAid and there are no major concerns specifically referring to DG ECHO. This report recommends (i) translating procedures for the selection of UN partners into practical criteria, (ii) carrying out a formal appraisal of alternative aid delivery mechanisms, (iii) collecting adequate information on the efficiency and the achievements of the projects funded through the UN, and (iv) improving the UN's access to supporting documentation.
4.5. Visibility of aid and communication
The broad objective of DG ECHO's communication work is to boost understanding, in Europe and in countries where Commission-funded humanitarian operations are implemented, of the concrete contribution made by humanitarian aid to the EU commitment of solidarity with the world's most vulnerable people. The high profile and rapidly moving environment of humanitarian aid means that media-oriented activities are central to the strategy. An example of this was the immediate deployment of DG ECHO communication officers in major crisis situations such as the Haiti earthquake and the Pakistan floods. They handled the media on the spot and were able to highlight the EU relief efforts. They were also joined by film crews working for Europe by Satellite, ensuring broad dissemination of film material.
An EU-wide survey in 2010 showed that EU citizens strongly support action at European level to help crisis victims: eight out of ten citizens (79 %) think it is important that the EU funds humanitarian aid outside its borders (Special Eurobarometer 343 on humanitarian aid). This policy therefore presents an ongoing opportunity for the Commission to `connect' positively with citizens. Communicating effectively with young people who are generally more receptive could have longer-term humanitarian benefits.
A number of print publications were produced. These included a trilingual brochure Looking at Humanitarian Aid (in English, French and Spanish); a leaflet Protecting the Humanitarian Space; and reprints of existing leaflets, in particular DG ECHO at a Glance in numerous language versions. There was continued demand for such information products, in particular for the comic book: 173 185 copies in five language versions (Dutch, English, French, German and Italian) were requested and distributed up to the end of the year, mainly thanks to strong demand from school teachers.
Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response and quickly became the third most popular Commissioner's website.
A staggering 14 million people were reached by a cinema spot campaign in Denmark, Germany and Spain in January and February (3.4 million in Denmark, 7.2 million in Germany and 3.5 million in Spain), thanks to the blockbuster Avatar, to which the ECHO spot was linked. An additional 14 million cinema-goers in France and Italy saw the UNHCR/European Commission Humanitarian Aid spot (2.5 million in France and 11.5 million in Italy) between January and May.
To ensure the visibility of EU aid, DG ECHO continued to advise relief partner organisations on communication activities funded under operational financing agreements. Related expenditure under operational visibility budget lines was also monitored. In addition, 2010 was the first year of implementation of a new approach based on less grant funding in operations and more direct communication work to be undertaken or monitored by the information and communication unit. This was achieved by using a 1 million Commission Decision on the financing of public awareness, information and communication actions in the humanitarian field, which was adopted in December 2009. DG ECHO received 37 proposals from partners for joint communication actions, out of which six proposals were selected. Two of the proposed actions have already been completed, and the remainder are planned for implementation in the first half of 2011. The two joint communication actions carried out in 2010 were: (1) an interactive multimedia exhibition `La Scienza dell'Emergenza' plus associated media events in northern Italy, organised by CEVSI; (2) `Le banquet de la faim' -- public awareness-raising events in 28 French cities, including a central event at the Eiffel Tower in Paris on World Food Day. The latter provided very good publicity for the cause as well as for the organisers Action Contre la Faim and European Commission Humanitarian Aid. `Le banquet de la faim' also won the `Grand Prix Stratégies des relations publiques 2010' in France in the category `Campagnes d'intérêt général'.
Other public events organised by DG ECHO's information and communication unit in 2010
4.6. Security and safety issues
Humanitarian aid organisations operate in difficult environments, typified by unpredictability, volatility, insecurity and problems with gaining access to the people affected. These conditions combined with the fact that operations are carried out by third parties (DG ECHO's partners) make achievement of policy objectives a challenging task. This explains why security is a high priority for the Commission.
During 2010, a significant number of violent acts were committed, directly or indirectly, against humanitarian aid workers. In particular, there has been an upward trend in the number of incidents involving national/local NGO staff. These security incidents continued to undermine the operational efficiency and effectiveness of humanitarian partners. This more insecure environment also affected DG ECHO staff in the field, who fell victim, although unharmed, in several cases, notably in Quito and in Nyala. DG ECHO continues to deploy on a permanent basis in high-risk countries/areas, such as Pakistan and Yemen.
During constant monitoring of the security situation in places where DG ECHO carries out its activities, more than 60 security alerts were launched and appropriate security arrangements to mitigate the threats were proposed. Security-related information held by Commission departments and external security partners was accessed and duly disseminated to relevant actors.
In this context, the Commission continued its efforts to improve the overall security of humanitarian aid personnel -- be they Commission or partners' staff in the field -- in order to adapt to an increasingly volatile and insecure environment. The Commission has established its own comprehensive security policy, taking into account the specifics of delivery of humanitarian aid.
To respond to the growing security threats, the Commission set up a security team for DG ECHO at the end of 2008. The overall purpose is to develop and implement the security policies and procedures for relevant staff at headquarters and in the field, within the Commission's security framework.
The Commission also promoted its security arrangements in seminars and fora organised by international organisations and NGOs.
4.7. Training initiative -- NOHA
The EU finances networks and training in the humanitarian field. One example is NOHA, the first network of universities at European level active in developing education on humanitarian action. It seeks greater professionalism among humanitarian workers by providing a solid intellectual grounding and developing sound concepts and principles that will, in turn, lead to `good practice'. It also contributes to greater awareness of humanitarian issues among the broader public and policy-makers. It has been a model for other quality networks.
The NOHA Master's programme is an inter-university, multidisciplinary postgraduate programme launched in 1993 that provides high-quality education and professional skills for personnel working or intending to work in the area of international humanitarian assistance. NOHA takes an interdisciplinary approach, linking theory, practice, participatory learning and case-based analyses.
NOHA was developed jointly by the Commission and the universities concerned under the auspices of the Socrates/Erasmus programme. The NOHA Master's programme is the first of its kind in the world, bringing together seven universities from all over Europe. The strong commitment of the NOHA Universities is extended through a broader network of associates in each of the EU countries and at the broader level of 83 European Faculties dealing with related issues. This is the Thematic Network of Humanitarian Development Studies of which NOHA is the starting point and the core component.
The objectives pursued by this training are to:
pool academic resources and cultural traditions in order to accommodate diverse
individual, academic and employment needs in the field of humanitarian action;
provide the academic and professional profiles and skills for personnel working in the field
a concrete example of European solidarity and response to situations of complex emergencies all around the world.
Administration and organisation of the NOHA programme are entirely in the hands of the universities participating. Further information on this training is available at http://www.nohanet.org.
5.1. Introduction to financial tables
DG ECHO implements the part of the EU's annual general budget that is allocated to humanitarian aid and, as from 2010, to civil protection. Over the last three years, an average of 1 billion per year has been committed to humanitarian aid.
Sources of funds for humanitarian assistance
On the whole, the Commission has two sources of funding for humanitarian assistance:
· The general EU budget. Humanitarian aid falls under Title 23 of the budget, which is
divided into the following lines:
the main one that covers humanitarian operations;
a line which has covered food aid activities since 1 January 2007;
a line that covers operational support and disaster preparedness operations;
as from 2010, new lines covering civil protection under DG ECHO's
lines for support expenditure (humanitarian aid and civil protection).
· The European Development Fund, which is used for humanitarian aid operations in ACP
To be able to respond rapidly to specific aid requirements created by events that could not have been foreseen when the budget was established, the Commission may also call on an Emergency Aid Reserve (Title 40). To mobilise this Reserve, a trilateral agreement between the Commission, the Council and Parliament has to be obtained. In the case of ACP countries, the Commission also draws on financial resources available under the European Development Fund (EDF), which has an allocation for emergency and humanitarian aid.
5.2. Financial tables
I DG ECHO budget over the years 1993-2010
II Graph on DG ECHO budget over the years 1993-2010
III Budget for humanitarian aid and civil protection over the years 1993-2010
IV Contracts and funding decisions
V Sectoral breakdown of activities
VI Global geographic breakdown of funding 2004-2010
VII Geographic breakdown of funding 2004-2010
VIII Implementing partners:
(a) Humanitarian aid contracts by main category and nationality of partners
(b) Contracts for humanitarian aid operations, by partner
(c) Contracts for humanitarian aid operations, top 25 partners
(d) Contracts for humanitarian aid operations, by beneficiary country and implementing partner
IX. Consolidated report on EU funding for humanitarian aid in 2010
(European Commission and Member States)
(a) Breakdown by beneficiary country
(b) Breakdown by donor