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Nepal Monitor: The National Online Journal

Significant Gaps in Food, Non-food Items in Western Floods

OCHA issues its final situatoin report on floods in western Nepal.

Mid and Far Western Floods and Landslides OCHA Situation Report No. 5
This situation report is based on information received from UN Agencies, humanitarian partners and government sources in Kathmandu and the affected districts.


- Changes in District Administration Office management. District Disaster Relief Committee (DDRC) postponed until Chief District Officer (CDO) positions are filled.

- Food and Non Food items (NFI) distribution is on-going.

- Significant gaps remain in NFI kits and bed net contributions.

- No epidemic outbreaks reported. Suspected cholera outbreak in Kailali identified as food poisoning.


Situation Overview
Heavy rainfall followed by severe flash floods from 19-21 September affected more than 200,000 people throughout the Far-West and Mid-West Regions of Nepal. While Kailali and Kanchanpur were the worst-affected districts, other districts adversely impacted by the heavy rainfall included Bardiya, Dadeldhura, Kalikot, Doti, Bajhang, Mugu and Dang. The flood water receded quickly in many areas, enabling families to return to their place of origin. However, they returned to damaged homes with varying degrees of impact from the flash floods, including loss of food stocks, goods, crops and livelihood options. A significant number remain displaced and vulnerable in terms of health, sanitation, hygiene and nutrition. Food aid distribution is underway. Non-food relief materials and bed nets remain the outstanding gaps in the relief response.

Kailali overview: In Kailali, Nepal Red Cross Society (NRCS) estimates 160,000 people (23,571 households) were affected by the flash floods. While the whole District was affected, the most affected Village Development Committees (VDCs) were Dasinhapur, Narayanpur, Tikapur, Khailad, Lalbojhi, Bhajani and Thapapur. The landslides in the hilly areas combined with bad road conditions constrained access to relief services for affected people, in particular in Sugarkhal and Pandaun VDCs.

Kanchanpur Overview: The floods in Kanchanpur affected 30, 733 people (5,961 households). The disaster claimed 14 lives. This data is being verified by the DDRC. Eighteen VDCs and Mahendranagar Municipality were affected by the flash floods. The worst-affected areas were Dekhatbhuli, Shankarpur VDCs and Mahendranagar Municipality. Other severely affected VDCs include Krishnapur, Parasan, Dodhara, Rauteli Bichawa, Rampur Bilaspur and Raikawar Bichawa.

Needs and Response
DDRC: The Kailali and Kanchanpur CDO posts are currently vacant as the government administration was reshuffled on 19 October. The DDRC meetings will resume once the new CDOs are in position to address key planning and funding matters. Cluster coordination: The DDRC clusters continue to function in Kailali and Kanchanpur. The cluster 3w (‘who, what, where’ tool) are available from the cluster leads, online and from OCHA upon request. Organizations are encouragedto update activities and relief items distributed through the cluster leads to ensure the 3w is maintained, which will minimize gaps, avoid duplication, maximize use of limited resources and enhance planning capacity. An update from theclusters is as follows:

From 15 October, NRCS started distribution of the World Food Program (WFP) food contribution of 1,922 MT. In the first phase, food will be distributed to food insecure flood-affected households in most affected locations of Kailali and Kanchanpur Districts. WFP calculates immediate food needs based on average family size of 6 people and its package for this unit contains 40KG rice; 7KG pulse; 3 Lt oil and1 KG salt. At the VDC level, adjustments will be made according to family size. The second phase of distribution will be based on a WFP assessment of the food security situation. WFP received an allocation of US$ 1 million from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) Rapid Response window for immediate relief operations. WFP will provide 15-days food for more than 204,000 affected persons.

Kailali: The 3w is maintained by the cluster lead NRCS. A total of 3,724 NFI kits were received to date and discussions are underway with donor organizations for further contributions to fill the gap of 4,200 kits. Blankets are highlighted as the most urgent need with the onset of winter. Kanchanpur: NRCS lacks adequate NFI stock to meet the needs of the flood-affected households. The flood-affected data is based on NRCS and District Development Committee (DDC) information, which is under verification. The estimated gap in NFI kits is 2,300 kits, which includes blankets, clothing and
cooking utensils. Mattresses were also highlighted as an urgent need by the DDC.

Kailali: The District Water Sanitation and Supply Office (DWSSO) annual budget has not been finalized to enable it to begin meeting needs. The hilly areas require long-term assistance, due to less access to water compared to lowlands. The WASH cluster is developing a plan of action to respond to the needs.
Kanchanpur: The floods caused extensive damage to irrigation channels and water facilities, as detailed in the DWSSO assessments. The WASH Cluster has pledges for hand pumps, but requires the approval of the DDRC as to the installation locations.

Common illnesses in flood affected areas in Kailali and Kanchanpur include eye and skin infections, diarrhoea and Acute Respiratory Infection. There are no epidemic outbreaks in the flood-affected areas reported to date. The District Public Health Office (DPHO) responds to information of diseases
outbreak and has active public health information campaigns aired. DPHO states that there is sufficient medicine stock and health facilities are adequately staffed in both Districts.

Kailali: A suspected cholera outbreak in Sri Lanka VDC was identified as food poisoning by DPHO following sample tests. The DPHO immediately responded to reports of diarrhoea outbreak and maintained surveillance of surrounding areas until samples were confirmed negative.

Gaps: Blankets are needed for the on-set of winter. The gap in mosquito nets remains unmet for both Districts. Gynaecological services are required in displacement locations especially in south eastern belt of Kailali.

Vulnerable groups: Vulnerable groups were particularly susceptible to the impact of the floods due to location of settlements; these included the Sukumbasi (landless), former Kamaiya (bonded-labourers), Dalit, indigenous communities and other marginalised groups in Kailali and Kanchanpur

Female-Headed Households: There are a significant number of female-headed households in the flood-affected population due to high level of male economic migration to India.

Displacement: While the majority of the flood-affected population returned home to rebuild their lives, several displacement locations remain occupied, mainly in community or national forest land. The reasons for not returning are related to recurrent disasters impacting on the families’ homes and livelihoods. The Protection Cluster is monitoring displacement locations for the following points:

▪ Food Security and access to water
▪ Access to health services/pregnant women
▪ Shelter (NFI, mosquito nets, etc.)
▪ Sanitation
▪ Security and lighting
▪ Victim psychosocial counselling

GBV: The Protection Cluster is verifying information received of rape in a Kailali displacement location on 16 October.
School building rehabilitation is needed for the flood damaged schools before schools resume the first week of November. Support is needed to replace and replenish education materials and uniforms damaged by the floods.

Kailali: The Education Cluster highlighted the need for school textbook supplies and the rehabilitation of damaged schools. The District Education Office (DEO) initial damage reports indicate that 82 schools were damaged from 33 VDCs. A detailed school damage assessment is underway.

Kanchanpur: School building rehabilitation, text book and educational materials are needed. The DEO preliminary assessment indicates 18 schools were partially damaged, with three school buildings at risk of further damage due to land cutting. The DEO also provided information that 48 Early Child Development (ECD) Centres were damaged and lost furniture.

From 16-21 October, in support of the District Agriculture and Development Office (DADO), the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) assessed crop, seed and sedimentation damage in Kanchanpur and Kailali. There was significant loss in crop productivity in the two districts due to water inundation. The DADO reported the total amount of crop damage for Kailali was 10,034 hectares and Kanchanpur 9,828 hectares. The seeds for the winter crops were also largely
destroyed, exacerbating food insecurity.

The DADO of Kailali and Kanchanpur has requested immediate assistance for the distribution of garden vegetable and crop (wheat and lentil) seeds for planting by November to reduce the impact from the loss of winter crops on food security and livelihoods. Fodder crop seeds are also needed for livestock.

Flood Response Online: The flood page for Mid-West and Far-West Region is available in the Nepal Inform Platform (NIP). Please click on the link below to access the page directly: Photographs: For photograph sharing, OCHA established a group for the Western Nepal Floods on Flikr Organisations are encouraged to join the group to view and share photographs of the emergency and response.

Logisitics support: OCHA mobilised an Emergency Cash Grant of US$ 50,000 from Norway to support in-country transport of relief goods and personnel, as well as local purchase of lifesaving needs.

NOTE: This will be the final Situation Report issued for the Mid- and Far-West Regions Floods. Updates will continue to be disseminated through OCHA’s fortnightly Humanitarian Situation Overview.

* You can also read the report here.
* More situation reports here.

Posted by Editor on October 22, 2008 5:12 PM