Three separate disasters caused extensive damage and loss of life and properties in Indonesia between July and December 2018. The first was a series of earthquakes – some of which reached a magnitude of seven on the Richter Scale – that struck the islands of Lombok and Sumbawa, from July to August 2018. The IFRC allocated an initial CHF500,000 from its Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) to enable the National Society, Palang Merah Indonesia (PMI) to meet priority humanitarian needs in the most heavily impacted areas. By August 2018, an Emergency Appeal was launched for CHF8.9 million to enable the PMI to assist some 20,000 households.
A series of strong earthquakes also struck Central Sulawesi Province on 28 September 2018, the strongest of which measured 7.4 magnitude, with the epicentre in Donggala Regency, close to the provincial capital, Palu. The earthquake triggered a tsunami which reached three metres in some places. Both events, combined with subsequent liquefaction and landslides, caused significant loss of life and damage.
Finally, on 22 December 2018, another tsunami struck Carita beach in Banten Province and the coast around the Sunda Straits, specifically in Pandeglang, South Lampung and Serang districts. Combined, the three disasters caused damage amounting to more than CHF1.6 billion. The IFRC allocated CHF750,000 from its DREF for the Sulawesi response bringing the total DREF advance to CHF1.25 million for Lombok and Sulawesi. In addition, the Emergency Appeal1 was revised to CHF22 million to incorporate the response in Sulawesi, enabling PMI to deliver assistance to a total of 40,000 households – 20,000 in each of Lombok and Sulawesi. Overall, the Emergency Appeal sought to reach CHF38.5 million to assist 280,000 people (70,000 households) who were affected by the three disasters. The Appeal was originally planned for completion by 28 February 2021 but was extended to 30 September 2021, eventually covering a total of 37 months.
Acting as the government mandated lead agency for the Movement in the three operations, the PMI worked with IFRC and ICRC as well as Partner National Societies (PNSs) in country, the latter including the American Red Cross, Qatar Red Cross, Turkish Red Crescent, Japanese Red Cross Society and German Red Cross. Bilateral support was also provided to this operation from other National Societies, including the Singapore Red Cross, Turkish Red Crescent, Malaysian Red Crescent, Kuwait Red Crescent, German Red Cross, Hong Kong Branch of the Red Cross Society of China and the Qatar Red Crescent.
Technical expertise available to the operation through the IFRC Country Cluster Delegation included disaster management, risk management, health, water, sanitation and hygiene, national society development, protection, gender and inclusion (PGI), communications, community engagement and accountability (CEA) and support services in planning, monitoring, evaluation and reporting, finance, logistics, and human resources and administration.
The International Committee of the Red Cross supported the setup of a restoring family links hotline system in addition to providing assistance to the PMI and a Movement-wide CEA Technical Working Group established at the national level in managing community feedback and complaints received through social media.