Summary: 251,160 Swiss francs have been allocated from the IFRC’s Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) to support the Paraguayan Red Cross (PRC) in delivering immediate assistance for up to 8,155 people. Un-earmarked funds to repay DREF are encouraged.
In July, heavy rains caused the Paraguay and Paraná river to overflow onto the Paraguayan territory. This affected people located in the low areas of Paraná or close to the river beds in the departments of Alto Paraná, Misiones, Itapúa and Ñeembucú as well as people from surrounding communities of Paso de Patria, Mayor Martinez, Cerrito, Villalbín and General Díaz. The government of Paraguay declared state of emergency in Misiones, Alto Paraná and Ñeembucú departments for 90 days from 27 June 2013.
From the onset, the International Federation of the Red Cross (IFRC) has been working closely together with the Paraguayan National Society. Along with PADRU’s disaster management coordinator, two members of the Regional Intervention Team (RIT) were deployed to support the National Society with the coordination of the DREF operations in general and the specific implementation of the livelihoods strategy to be applied through cash transfers. So far, with the support of the DREF, 30 people were mobilized to support the assessments; 179 children were reached with psychosocial support activities and 1,592 families with hygiene-promotion activities including distribution of hygiene kits. As far as cash transfer activities, volunteers have been trained and 516 families have been identified as beneficiaries—a number slightly above the original target.
The implementation of the operation was initially planned to last three months and be completed on 11 October 2013, with a final report made available on 11 January 2014. However, challenges have been encountered with the livelihoods component of the programme, particularly in the selection of voucher partners. Even though the rest of the operation is progressing as planned, this situation is leading the Paraguayan Red Cross to request an extension of the project deadline until 10 November 2013. The extension does not involve changes of the budget.