Coordination Activities in the Field
|Income from Voluntary Contributions1||12,256,990|
|Consultant Fees and Travel||126,501|
|Supplies, Materials, Furniture and Equipment||1,131,629|
|Fellowships, Grants and Contributions||60,000|
|Programme Support Costs||1,186,657|
|Total Expenditure (US$)||10,314,769|
|1 Includes allocations from the Field Coordination Reserve Fund of US$ 799,000 and US$ 5,500,000 from the pooled funding managed by UNDP|
The humanitarian situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) continues to rank among the worst in the world. Despite the first democratic elections in 46 years, insecurity prevailed in 2006. Many former zones of combat were affected by the presence of armed militias and by fighting between militias and government forces, which operated with logistical support from the United Nations Mission in the DRC. These localized armed conflicts led to recurrent waves of population displacements in the east of the country, most notably in Ituri district and in the Kivus and Katanga provinces. While the total number of IDPs in the DRC decreased by the end of 2006, 1.1 million people remained displaced and approximately 413,000 were refugees in neighbouring countries.
The DRC is a pilot country for a number of coordination initiatives under humanitarian reform, including the cluster approach, the Good Humanitarian Donorship (GHD) initiative, the CERF and the pooled fund, or Common Humanitarian Fund. The introduction of the 2006 DRC Humanitarian Action Plan (HAP) was instrumental in securing additional funds for humanitarian assistance.
In response to sudden emergencies, OCHA deployed six mobile temporary antenna offices and two maisons humanitaires through the Rapid Response Mechanism (RRM) for enhanced access and delivery of humanitarian assistance to remote areas in eastern DRC. In areas where OCHA was not present, Kinshasa-based teams supported rapid needs assessments and the coordination of natural disaster and epidemics response.
OCHA coordinated the securing and opening of 12 IDP camps in the district of Ituri. Due to increased insurgent activities prior to national elections on 30 July, RRM activities intensified – reaching a total of over 1 million people during the year. Since its inception in October 2004, around 1.7 million vulnerable people throughout the eastern provinces received assistance in shelter, nonfood items and water/sanitation as well as emergency education through the action of humanitarian partners within the framework of the RRM (managed by OCHA in partnership with UNICEF).
The HC, supported by OCHA, held a launch of the 2006 DRC HAP in Brussels to attract the world’s attention to this ‘forgotten crisis’. In terms of preparedness, OCHA created an ad-hoc multisector rapid response team for deployment to humanitarian crisis sites, and reinforced the work of INGOs by funding deployment of personnel and resources to respond to specific needs. The capacity of local NGOs to respond to emergencies was also improved through increased participation in the elaboration of the HAP for DRC and in the cluster mechanisms.
Additionally, pooled fund allocations have been directly disbursed to national NGOs projects within the HAP.
The implementation of the cluster approach enabled the formalization of sector-specific coordination mechanisms. OCHA’s role in ensuring coordination between the clusters proved to be critical for prioritizing activities and identifying gaps. The introduction of the pooled fund and CERF funding mechanisms (which were the largest source of humanitarian funding for the 2006 HAP) served as strong incentives for actors to engage in the clusters structure and in the substance of the coordination work.
The coordination of humanitarian action also played a major role in integrating cross-cutting themes, ensuring that gender and HIV/AIDS issues were mainstreamed throughout the DRC HAP. HIV/AIDS and gender concerns were integrated into all phases across the sectors (clusters), from the implementation of humanitarian programming policies to training projects.
Although OCHA made significant progress in terms of coordination and strategic funding prioritization, a number of issues still need attention in 2007: consolidation of the tools and standardization of the process of allocation of the pooled fund; introduction of the HAP’s monitoring framework; strengthened harmonization of data collection tools; analysis of secondary data to provide a clearer picture of the humanitarian situation, with indicators; improvement of both Advocacy and Information Units in producing timely reports; and enhancement of the Humanitarian Information Service tools and services.