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West and Central Africa: Floods DREF operation n° MDR61006

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Summary: Since the start of the rainy season, the following fifteen countries have experienced significant flooding (Liberia, Guinea, Burkina Faso, Niger, Gambia, Gabon, Togo, Mali, Central African Republic, Ghana, Benin, Mauritania, Côte d'Ivoire, Sierra Leone and Senegal). Estimates indicated that more than 200,000 people were affected; thousands of families were uprooted from their homes and material losses were considerable. Other floods had caused further damage in Guinea and Sierra Leone.

The flooding occurred after the Federation launched the preliminary Emergency Appeal (10 August 2009) for CHF 918,000 (EUR 604,000 / USD 852,000) to assist the Red Cross and Red Crescent National Societies in disaster preparedness, including the readiness of trained staff and volunteers and delivering vital relief items from pre-positioned emergency stocks in the region. It is worth noting the link between the Emergency Appeal and the operation, which was part of the Federation's planned approach to put early warning and early action into practice and which enabled a timely response. This also reflects the effectiveness of collaborative efforts and partnerships with, among other organizations, the African Centre of Meteorological Applications for Development (ACMAD) that provided credible early warning from weather data that forecast a risk of serious flooding in West and Central Africa. The information received from ACMAD allowed the National Societies to prepare accordingly. The assessments completed led to the development of further strategies to support National Societies to assist those affected in their countries.

This final report is a bit similar to the operation update related to Early Warning - Early Action (EW-EA) emergency appeals as both funds have been sued to fund the same activities creating synergy between two sources of funding to support the same field response activities. In Senegal and Burkina Faso the funds provided by the DREF were to respond to the "first wave" before the related Emergency Appeals being launched.

The major donors to the DREF are the Irish, Italian, Netherlands and Norwegian governments and ECHO. Details of all donors can be found on: http://www.ifrc.org/what/disasters/responding/drs/tools/dref/donors.asp