In recent months, the Triangle G H team continued its activities towards Saharawi refugees living in the camps south of Tindouf. The UNHCR (United Nations Refugee Agency) programme enabled the purchase of a production line of soaps with a capacity of over 8,000 250g soap bars per day, which will allow in 2015 the regular provision of soap to the entire refugee population.
As part of the ECHO (Humanitarian Aid Department of the European Commission) programme, the various tenders allowed the selection of the supplier of mobility and comfort equipment for people with disabilities and of the company in charge of the construction of a new mechanical workshop. The distributions and construction will be completed in the first quarter of 2015.
The programming of activities for 2015 and the preparation of new proposals for UNHCR and DG-ECHO are the priorities of the end of 2014.
The challenges faced by this country in transition in order to cover the basic needs of the population are huge, especially for ethnic groups living close to the borders, who constitute the most disadvantaged section of the population.
Food security and rural development programmes resumed after the rainy season period that hinders movement in this area particularly difficult to access.
The programme funded by the Programmed Food Aid PFA, aiming to improve access to food products for vulnerable rural villages in the canton of Matupi and to increase producers' agricultural yields, was completed in late 2014 and achieved the expected results through activities related to the improvement of irrigation and the protection of rice fields: estimated production gain higher than 35% for certain plots.
The programme funded by the French Development Agency and aiming to sustainably improve management skills, develop village territories and strengthen the skills of AYO, Triangle G H's implementing partner, enters its second year. The processing and marketing of Elephant Foot Yam, a cash crop with high added value and very famous in Chin State, will materialize, and the production of this plant, chosen to improve consistently farmers' income, will be encouraged by the completion of test plots and the implementation of the workshops of the second year of the training programme.
TGH wishes to continue its projects in Chin State, a region seldom targeted by humanitarian assistance, including by improving the resilience capacity of many villagers who have experienced in recent years external events (bad weather conditions and rat invasions) plunging them into a cycle of over indebtedness. A project proposal is being prepared for the Programmed Food Aid.
Tensions in the Central African Republic (CAR), particularly abuses between Christian and Muslim armed groups, still cause many population displacements (430, 000 individuals identified at December 5, including more than 61,000 in Bangui). Many Central African Republic nationals also took refuge in neighbouring countries (over 424,000 people). The transitional government, headed by Catherine Samba-Panza, tries to restore order and State services, but its inability to do so illustrates the political and social distress the whole country is subject to. The international forces of Minusca (United Nations), Sangaris (France) and Eufor (Europe) are also overwhelmed by this deleterious situation that makes the protection of civilians difficult. Humanitarian actors, sometimes mistaken for military personnel, are subject to an increased number of attacks (thefts and threats) from idle and disoriented communities, making work in the field very complex.
Inter-community violence impacts the daily lives of Central African Republic nationals (the return to school has been delayed for over two weeks), as well as some of TGH's activities The mobile base for street children, funded by UNICEF and the European Union and set up a few weeks ago, is unable to reach areas where insecurity is too high. This base organizes educational activities in different communities (in partnership with the Network of NGOS working with Central African Republic children (RFERC)) in support of street children estimated at 6,000 in Bangui. Since 2011, TGH has been working with these children facing many sorts of violence making them highly vulnerable (drugs, sexual exploitation, forced enrolment into armed groups, etc.). This action allows the identification of children and the provision of support, when desired, to help them find their family of origin, a host family or a medical facility.
TGH is also a major actor in Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) emergency actions in IDP camps in Bambari, Ouaka prefecture: construction of latrines, water trucking, rehabilitation of the drinking water treatment plant in the city of Bambari, or disinfection of open well water. Other WASH activities are also implemented in Ngakobo, the headquarters of the SUCAF plant that produces almost all the sugar of the Central African Republic, located 60 km south of Bambari, and which hosts many displaced people, increasing the needs for water, sanitation and hygiene. TGH is implementing soap distribution and hygiene promotion activities, and builds emergency latrines.
The deteriorating security situation in Iraq and the taking over by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or DAECH) of significant areas of the Iraqi territory have caused massive displacements of populations, especially in the autonomous region of Kurdistan. Since January 2014, 1.8 million people have been displaced in Iraq, mostly since August, when Daech achieved significant progress.
The Iraqi Kurdistan region is particularly affected, with more than 850,000 displaced people adding to some 220,000 Syrian refugees who had already sought refuge in the region. As of August 13, the United Nations declared the crisis as a level 3 emergency, the highest level of humanitarian crisis.
TGH, officially registered in Iraqi Kurdistan since July 2013, is implementing a non-formal education programme for an 18 month period in a city in the suburb of Erbil, to the attention of 6 to 11 year old Syrian children, and has been providing since August 2014 emergency assistance to displaced Iraqis in the area of Erbil through the provision of water and sanitation services, with support from the Rhône-Alpes Region.
TGH will also distribute winter kits, including heaters, insulating mats, blankets and fuel to the most vulnerable IDPs in the district of Daratoo, thanks to support from the French Crisis Center. A partnership signed with UNICEF will also help improve access conditions to safe drinking water and sanitation for the displaced populations originally installed provisionally in various public buildings (schools, etc.) but for who no alternative accommodation has been found.
TGH is also pursuing a continuous evaluation work in order to draft responses to the needs of refugee and displaced populations in Iraq.
TGH continues the actions of both current programmes, one on agricultural irrigation and the other on improved sanitation conditions and access to water. A contract signed with a local company suggests that the start of the work on irrigation canals is imminent, the tender for boreholes and latrines has been launched, and the analysis of the proposals is ongoing.
TGH is awaiting the results of a feasibility study commissioned from a consulting firm by the French Development Agency (AFD), as they will allow the NGO to position itself to meet the identified needs through a three year irrigation project.
The TGH team is currently putting the finishing touches to the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene projects funded by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency, SIDA, and by Oxfam Hong Kong. SIDA has funded the rehabilitation of the water production system and part of the water supply system of the city of Sohung, as well as the construction of some health facilities and the establishment of hygiene promotion activities. Thanks to Oxfam HK funding, the drinking water network was extended to the District 5 of the city and interventions were complemented in terms of good hygiene practices and improved sanitary environment. These projects were completed in late 2014, and TGH is currently discussing with Oxfam Hong Kong the continuation of the extension of the water supply system in order to cover all the districts in the city and to complement health facilities, especially at the level of institutions (schools, health centers, etc.).
TGH continues its capacity building activities of the North Korean Federation for Care of the Aged (KFCA) funded by the European Union on the theme "non-State actors". This project, started in January 2014 for a period of 24 months, aims to improve the living conditions of the elderly in partnership with the Federation. An initial diagnosis was achieved with KFCA before the start of activities: training; improvement of the living conditions in retirement homes; and awareness-raising on old age-related problems. Support from the Polish Embassy allowed the organization of training in geriatrics and the provision of equipment to the National Research Institute for Geriatrics of Pyongyang. Finally, a grant from the Inter-ministerial Food Aid Committee allowed the provision of an assistance tailored to the elderly, delivered just before the summer (the most difficult period in terms of food), and the establishment of appropriate infrastructure for increased food production capacities for retirement homes (greenhouses, food processing equipment, etc.). KFCA is also the operational partner for the implementation of this action.
A project in partnership with the Office of Aquaculture, recently approved by the European Union and planned to start early 2015, will focus on improving the production of two fish farms in the North-Pyongyang Province and in the Nampo administrative area with the aim of securing food provision for young children living in these regions. It consists of several stages aiming to increase fish production in the farms through an integrated agriculture-breeding-fish farming system, and to improve the logistics distribution network from the farms to children's institutions and fish conservation and preparation practices in institutions, through the optimizing of equipment and knowledge. This integrated fish farming system previously introduced in two farms of the North-Hamhung Province allows rapid increase in production, while requiring few external inputs.
The mission's team is being completely renewed, with the expected arrival in January of a new Head of Mission and two project managers, in a particular context, as North Korean authorities have been enforcing since October a strict quarantine to limit the Ebola outbreak.
The programme of assistance to the inhabitants of the village of Sulangan affected by Typhoon Haiyan in November 2013 continues. Funded by the Fondation de France and the Crisis Center, it enhances the return to standard living conditions for the most vulnerable populations, through fishing activities (repair of 76 boats and construction of 70 new boats) and agricultural activities (distribution of pigs and chickens). However, typhoon Hagupit, classified in category 4 (winds between 210 and 250 km/h), caused the interruption of activities. In partnership with local NGOs, local authorities took the necessary measures to evacuate and shelter populations in schools, gyms, churches or caves. Thomas Boudant, Head of Mission of TGH in the Philippines, visited some of these shelters in order to assess needs and to map the number of displaced persons. Accompanied by the Czech NGO People in Need, he also visited the area north of the city of Borongan, where material damage is relatively minor: only light structure houses have been destroyed, solid houses have been slightly damaged. The assessment missions highlighted different needs according to the villages. TGH will focus its activities as a priority on isolated villages difficult to reach, and take part in the coordination with other NGOs, UN agencies and the Philippine authorities in order to respond effectively to each situation.
Photos of people's evacuation.
Photo : TGH ©
Photos of people's evacuation.
Photo : TGH ©
Photos taken during the assessment after the typhoon
Photo : : Thomas Boudant / TGH ©
Photos taken during the assessment after the typhoon
Photo : : Thomas Boudant / TGH ©
The mobile base of the capacity building programme of local actors in favour of child protection, funded by the European Union and in partnership with a network of actors working with street children (REIPER) started operating in early November. A sanitation and social team travels by bus to cover some of the needs of street children (prevention, distribution of hygiene products and snack food, etc.) and to create a link between them and the structures available to them. The name of the mobile base - Bana (*) Congo – has been chosen by the children themselves.
The end of the rainy season allowed the resumption of most movements in Darfur, facilitating the humanitarian assistance provided by Triangle's G H staff in Sudan, in Khartoum and on the operational bases in Darfur. Triangle G H's participation in assessments and in the provision of emergency assistance to displaced people in the Kabar area in Central Darfur has been facilitated. More than 30,000 people fleeing the fighting around the town of Um Dukhun, where TGH is also active, settled in this area. In partnership with United Nations agencies, international NGOs and ministries in charge, Triangle G H contributes to the establishment of an emergency response for these people, with the installation of drinking water points and the distribution of essential goods.
The TGH team is currently working on the programming of activities for 2015, gathering ideas and lessons learned from all the operational staff of the mission, for the submission of project proposals to the attention of major donors in the country (European Union, French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and UN agencies).
TGH is currently answering a call for projects from the United Nations Democracy Fund (UNDEF) aiming to support "projects that strengthen the voice of civil society, promote human rights and encourage the participation of all groups in democratic processes"*.UNDEF favouring projects supported by local organizations, the Timorese association Rede Feto, TGH's partner for more than a year on a capacity building programme of local actors for the protection of children and women victims of domestic violence, will submit a draft in response to this call. UNDEF’s response, expected during 2015, will decide on the implementation of this new project, which would allow Rede Feto and Triangle G H to renew their partnership and have greater visibility on issues relating to the protection of women and children and the capacity building of civil society.
In 2015, a new partnership is born with Résonances humanitaires. This association supports humanitarian workers wishing to undertake retraining. It helps them enhance the value of their experience in order to fit into the classic employment circuit. We will comment further on this new partnership in our next newsletter.