Emergency Response & Relief Unit
Relief and Rehabilitation program of EKHCDC has got a long history, which actually goes back to the late 70s and early 80s when the drought, followed by the rampant famine, occurred in the northern part of our country. Since then, EKHCDC has been engaging in emergency responses and rehabilitation activities and as a result, many millions of people have been addressed to save their lives and to restore their life situations. There are different components in the program that meet different needs of communities.
- Community-based seed banking is the scheme that practiced through the food for work approach run under the program. The women are highly active in the program because they, and children, are easily affected segments of the society due to the adverse effects of frequent droughts. The main purpose of the seed bank is to speed up the recovery and rehabilitation processes after any adverse incident.
- The emergency relief component is designed to deliver emergency assistance for drought prone areas. EKHCDC is involved in providing emergency assistance frequently. Such emergency assistances required at times including food items, potable water, medical supplies, etc.
- Warehouses are constructed in those drought prone areas to store mainly seeds.
- The program undertakes the following as well:
- identify people affected by disasters,
- respond to their humanitarian needs with interventions appropriate for their prioritized needs, and
- restore their life back to pre-calamity living conditions.
EKHCDC is a board-led resident and registered charity/organization with versatile development and humanitarian programs. The head office of the organization is located in Addis Ababa City Administration in wereda 5 of Kirkos sub-city. The commissioner is the head leader /CEO of the head office and he is responsible for all leadership roles of the commission office to run all programs. There are other department heads under the commissioner who are members of the commission management and lead various development programs and humanitarian action. Finance and grant management and human resource and logistics departments are the supporting structures under the commissioner to facilitate humanitarian actions with respect to financial management and employees’ recruitment. Moreover, EKHC has well established four organizational structures in the countrywide with strong structural connections and supposed to be enablers to ease the humanitarian actions in all parts and regions of the country.
The humanitarian coordination involves in bringing together the humanitarian action stakeholders to ensure a coherent and principled response to emergencies. The aim is to assist people when they need relief or protection to survive from any hazard that they are suffering. Humanitarian coordination therefore seeks a progressive improvement and effectiveness of humanitarian responses by ensuring greater predictability, accountability and partnership. Coordination thereof involves in assessing situations to detect actual needs of the target communities; identifying priorities; developing project concept notes with possible response strategies to address the hot needs, searching for partners and mobilizing for funding and other resources, responding and implementing the program and monitoring the progresses.
The humanitarian action program of EKHCDC entitled as Relief and Rehabilitation program is fully responsible to coordinate and manage all duties of the humanitarian actions. The program is equipped with well experienced field and management staffs to be deployed in order to coordinate and facilitate the humanitarian actions with full capacity to undertake the most efficient implementation of the program.
Humanitarian action cannot be interconnected to any political benefits, any fundamental reasons or logics behind to interlink its operation with armed forces or even socially progressive moves towards peace and democracy or any other organizational businesses existing in the emergency response intervention regions but works to respond to the affected communities in need of emergent humanitarian responses within the country in order to rescue their lives dying of the disaster. Moreover, activities promoting the rehabilitation of the communities to facilitate their restoration with respect to various forms of livelihood maintenances and peace building dialogues with particular focus on civil unrest areas are supposed to be undertaken afterwards of the emergency responses. The Ethiopian Kale Heywet Church Development Commission therefore works the humanitarian action in accordance with the scope.
Emergency Response Modalities
In terms of humanitarian assistances, EKHCDC has a long-time experience to address the needs of the people affected by drought or any other hazards. The organization uses various approaches or modalities by being flexible as per the relevancies of the modalities for effective emergency response to the needy.
- In kind Distribution: EKHCDC distributes food items and other supports in kind to the target beneficiaries
- Cash Distribution: cash distribution model is also used to the target beneficiaries so that they may use the money to buy food or other items based on their family needs. Financial Institutions or banks are called to undertake cash distributions.
- Direct Distribution:- The Emergency Response and Relief Unit directly identifies the target beneficiaries in cooperation with the local goverment. After the identification of the beneficiaries, a financial institution is called to undertake the distribution of cash to the beneficiaries.
- Distribution through SHG/CLA : The Emergency Response and Relief Unit empowers Self Help Groups (SHGs) and Claster Level Associations(CLAs) in the disaster affected areas so that they may identify the target beneficiearies in shock. After the identification of the beneficiearies, the emrgency response unit facilitates ways that SHGs/CLAs to be responsible to play the distribution role.
- Food for Work Model: This model is followed to link emergency response to development activities with special focus on environment protection. According to the national government analysis, when the drought/disaster affected beneficiaries are categorized under priority two and three, then EKHCDC connects the support with environment protection to provide the support. If they are under hotspot one, free distribution model is used.
- Rehabilitation: Rehabilitation programs usually implemented in post disaster occasions after emergency responses. This is to restore the life conditions of the disaster affected communities. Mitigation actions with input supplies and development projects are implemented to improve their livelihood and family income.
The choice of models is determined after an exhaustive assessments and discussions with the local government, the target beneficiaries and separate market assessments in local and national levels. Moreover, the policies and interests of the funding partners guide to apply the relevant modality in agreement with EKHCDC.