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Serbia/Kosovo: Floods DREF Operation No. MDRKV002 Final Report

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The International Federation's Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) is a source of un-earmarked money created by the Federation in 1985 to ensure that immediate financial support is available for Red Cross Red Crescent response to emergencies. The DREF is a vital part of the International Federation's disaster response system and increases the ability of national societies to respond to disasters.

Summary: CHF 123,597 was allocated from the International Federation's Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) on 28 November, 2007 to support the Red Cross organizations in delivering assistance to some 3,500 people affected by floods, and to replenish disaster preparedness stocks.

This operation assisted immediately the most affected population in six municipalities by providing them with food, hygiene items, blankets, mattresses and drinking water. This assistance provided to a total of 3,500 beneficiaries helped them meet their basic needs.

The situation

On 26 November 2007, heavy rains and snow over two days caused floods in many villages and cities throughout Kosovo (Prishtina/Pristina, Peja/Pec, Podujeve/Podujevo, Fushe Kosove/Kosovo Polje, Vushtrri/Vucitrn, Skenderaj/Srbica, Lipjan/Lipljan, Kamenica/Kamenice, and Obiliq/Obilic with the villages around). Increased water levels in the rivers Terstena, Drini I Bardhe, Sitnica, Klina have broken the banks and have flooded the surrounding areas. Houses and personal belongings, agricultural lands and equipment were damaged. Some villages in the rural and poorer part of the province have been left inaccessible. An estimated 714 families (approximately 3,500 people) were affected by the flooding, many of which had to be evacuated from their houses and sheltered in neighbouring villages with relatives, neighbours or friends.

A detailed assessment of the situation at municipal level conducted by the Red Cross staff and volunteers together with the local emergency departments made it obvious that the situation needed immediate response.

It is important to mention that this flooding was not the only one affecting Kosovo from November until June 2008. Two other flooding happened during this short period, one of them in March 2008 affecting the municipalities of Malisheve/Malisevo, Rahovec/Orahovac, Gjakova/Djakovica and Prishtina/Pristina and the other one in June 2008 affecting Prishtina/Pristina and Fushe Kosove/Kosovo Polje municipalities (different neighbourhoods). The Red Cross organizations were again the only ones that were on the spot immediately and from their buffer stock replenished by this DREF responded to the needs of the most affected.

How we work

All International Federation assistance seeks to adhere to the Code of Conduct for the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO's) in Disaster Relief and is committed to the Humanitarian Charter and Minimum Standards in Disaster Response (Sphere) in delivering assistance to the most vulnerable.

The International Federation's activities are aligned with its Global Agenda, which sets out four broad goals to meet the Federation's mission to "improve the lives of vulnerable people by mobilizing the power of humanity".

Global Agenda Goals:

- Reduce the numbers of deaths, injuries and impact from disasters.

- Reduce the number of deaths, illnesses and impact from diseases and public health emergencies.

- Increase local community, civil society and Red Cross Red Crescent capacity to address the most urgent situations of vulnerability.

- Reduce intolerance, discrimination and social exclusion and promote respect for diversity and human dignity.

Contact information

For further information specifically related to this operation please contact:

In the Federation Office in Kosovo: Shafiquzzaman Rabbani, Head of Office, Pristina; phone: +381 38 228187; fax: +381 38 228599; email: shafiquzzaman.rabbani@ifrc.org

In the Europe Zone Office, Budapest, Slobodanka Curic, Disaster Management Coordinator, phone: +36 1 248 33 05; fax: + 36 1 248 33 22; email: slobodanka.curic@ifrc.org

In Geneva: Linda A. Stops, Operations Coordinator, phone: 41 22 730 4300, fax: 41 22 733 0395, email: linda.stops@ifrc.org