Unnayan

Project Theme

Disaster Risk Reduction

Target Group

Women

Project Period

01 Apr 2014 - 31 Mar 2015

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Introduction

Orissa has a history of recurring natural disasters. While the coastal districts of Orissa are exposed to floods and cyclones, western Orissa is prone to acute droughts. In addition, the State is also affected by disasters like heat waves, epidemics, forest fire etc. The history of disasters substantiates the fact that about 80% of the State is prone to one or more forms of natural disasters. With 80% of annual rainfall concentrated over 3 months, the State is highly vulnerable to floods.

Impact by partner
  • All the VDPCs of 10 villages have updated their Community Contingency Plans (CCPs) for their village including preparation of (social map, resource map, transit map, vulnerability map) through participatory rural appraisal exercise (PRA), Task force, village development plan etc. The same plans were shared in the G.P level for future action.
  • 30 Task force team members were trained on Search and Rescue and first Aid. They are trained enough to face disasters. Mock drills were organised to review the respective role of task force team members.
  • The GKS committee formed in 10 villages have been working as per their prepared plan like, Village cleanliness, 2, Tube well repairing, 3. Pond renovation, 4. Support to sick persons. 5. Storing of ORS, Bleaching powder for emergency situation. 6. Training to adolescent girls on personal hygiene. 7. Organization of rally and campaign on public health.

Case Study

Phailin and subsequent floods

Phailin warning were relayed to Unnayan on 10th October and Flood warnings on 13th October. Unnayan immediately alerted its 164 Task Force Team members to disseminate the Government warnings and advisories to villagers in 32 vulnerable villages. A coordinator was designated to coordinate with the district administration for early warnings dissemination.

On 11th October an emergency meeting at Unnayan’s field office was organized with an objective to establish better coordination between the District Administration and other stakeholders. Plan for evacuation, identification of safe buildings and prepositioning of relief and rescue equipments were discussed. Among Key Government officials, Block Development Officer and Tehsildar of Basta, Jaleswar and Rashgovindapur block of Mayurbhanj and Balasore districts attended this meeting. PRI members, members of DRR committees, volunteers and Chief functionaries of NGOs working in these districts also participated.

Unnayan conducted Community meetings in villages were people were reluctant to move to safe shelters. Government representatives attended most of these meetings where they were motivated to shift to the safer locations. Mikes in Dussehera pandals were also effectively used to reach masses during this period.

After evacuation, 03 Oxfam boats and 10 trained rescue personnel were deployed for search and rescue. They were working in close coordination with the Government. The main target areas were, Santoshpur, Paschimabad, Ragunathpur and Rajapur GPs. The team rescued 2000 people in 48 hours (14th and 15th October). The coordination with the Government was exceptionally good (as stated by the rescue staff). The target areas to Unnayan were allocated by the Government. Any information about a rescue mission would be conveyed to the nearest boat by the Government officials. In one such instance, Tehsildar, Sucharu Bala requested Unnayan Rescue team to Rescue Revenue Inspector Ajeet Pradhan who was trapped at Vellora in Santoshpur GP. A team of four members led by Anup Behera brought him to safety. The information flow from the last mile was good which helped to establish a better coordination mechanism in search and rescue mission in Balasore. The rescue equipments including boats, lifebuoys and lifejackets etc already were prepositioned in Flood affected district of Balasore which helped not only to reach the unreached but also in rapid damage assessments.