Without direct assistance, Yehia predicts that most of these 15,000 small-holding farmers would be forced to depart Al Hasakah Province to seek work in larger cities in western Syria. Approximately 100,000 dependents — women, children and the elderly or infirm — would be left behind to live in poverty, he said. Children would be likely to be pulled from school, he warned, in order to seek a source of income for families left behind. In addition, the migration of 15,000 unskilled laborers would add to the social and economic pressures presently at play in major Syrian cities. A system already burdened by a large Iraqi refugee population may not be able to absorb another influx of displaced persons, Yehia explained, particularly at this time of rising costs, growing dissatisfaction of the middle class, and a perceived weakening of the social fabric and security structures that Syrians have come to expect and — in some cases — rely on.
28 January 2014, ODI talk on “build back better”:
"In 2004 the Indian Ocean tsunami devastated the lives of millions of people across 14 countries. The response took on the responsibility not only to save lives or even restore livelihoods, but to leave disaster struck communities safer and stronger than before the disaster. This goal became known as ‘build back better’; a slogan frequently heard again throughout responses to Cyclone Nargis in Myanmar in 2008 and the Haiti earthquake of 2010. Nine years later the ideal remains: the language of ‘building back better’ and ‘bouncing back better from crises’ is now common in the call for emergency agencies to take responsibility for incorporating ‘resilience building’ in their response.
But what exactly should ‘better’ look like? Better for whom, where, how? Is there anything in common in what those who speak of building back better mean - can it even be called an approach at all? Is it right to invest in building back better if it distracts attention and money away from the urgent and often overwhelming need to feed, treat and shelter people who have nothing but the clothes they stand up in? Questions that can be applied to the Philippines response, as the country recovers from Typhoon Haiyan.
What can today’s discussions on resilience building learn from the past decade’s experience of trying to use disasters as an opportunity for bringing about transformative change? Join us for the launch event of the Humanitarian Policy Group (HPG)’s ‘Disaster as Opportunity? Building Back Better in Aceh, Myanmar and Haiti’, a paper that seeks to contribute to the resilience debate through an examination of what ‘build back better’ meant in three disaster responses, the Indian Ocean tsunami in Aceh, Cyclone Nargis in Myanmar and the earthquake in Haiti.”
Lilianne Fan - Research Fellow, Humanitarian Policy Group
Jo da Silva - Director, Arup International Development
Priscilla M. Phelps - Disaster Recovery and Reconstruction Advisor, Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery
Simon Levine - Research Fellow, Humanitarian Policy Group
Unfortunately from Los Angeles it will be too early to participate, but this does look of interest.
ALNAP’s next Urban Webinar will be on 23 January, 2-3pm GMT. For more information and to register please visit: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7031277159571382530
Urban violence, even though it may not qualify as warfare under international humanitarian law, can involve large numbers of people who are killed, injured, raped, kidnapped, tortured and forcibly displaced. Violence is sometimes short-lived, but it can also become chronic. Urban violence creates a particularly challenging context for humanitarian organisations.
This webinar is based on ALNAP’s latest Lessons Paper Humanitarian Interventions in Situations of Urban Violence (to be published on the ALNAP website next week). The author of the paper, Elena Lucchi, will present important emerging lessons and raise awareness of the humanitarian consequences of urban violence. Intended primarily for field staff involved in programme design and evaluation, the webinar will help humanitarian organisations to start establishing criteria for engagement in situations of urban violence and to improve humanitarian responses, which specifically address the effects of violence. A number of case studies will be used to illustrate the main lessons.
The webinar will be chaired by Paul Knox Clarke, Head of Communications and Research (ALNAP) and the main presentation will be followed by a Q&A session with Elena and Kevin Savage, Research Co-ordinator, Humanitarian and Emergency Affairs -World Vision International.
"When all this is over, the world community needs to bring effective pressure to end the blockade of Gaza," he said.
"Any normal community would struggle to recover from this disaster. But a community that has been subjected to one of the longest blockades in human history, whose public health system has been destroyed and where the risk of disease was already rife, must be freed from these man made constraints to deal with the impact of a natural calamity such as this," the statement continued.
Chris Gunness, UNRWA Spokesperson, quoted in Maan NewsAgency article.
The Gaza Strip is currently under a state of emergency due to severe weather conditions caused by a historic storm front moving south across the Levant.
"my country is being tested by this hellstorm called Super Typhoon Haiyan, which has been described by experts as the strongest typhoon that has ever made landfall in the course of recorded human history. It was so strong that if there was a Category 6, it would have fallen squarely in that box. Up to this hour, we remain uncertain as to the full extent of the devastation, as information trickles in in an agonizingly slow manner because electricity lines and communication lines have been cut off and may take a while before these are restored. The initial assessment show that Haiyan left a wake of massive devastation that is unprecedented, unthinkable and horrific, affecting 2/3 of the Philippines, with about half a million people now rendered homeless, and with scenes reminiscent of the aftermath of a tsunami, with a vast wasteland of mud and debris and dead bodies."
"To anyone who continues to deny the reality that is climate change, I dare you to get off your ivory tower and away from the comfort of you armchair. I dare you to go to the islands of the Pacific, the islands of the Caribbean and the islands of the Indian ocean and see the impacts of rising sea levels; to the mountainous regions of the Himalayas and the Andes to see communities confronting glacial floods, to the Arctic where communities grapple with the fast dwindling polar ice caps, to the large deltas of the Mekong, the Ganges, the Amazon, and the Nile where lives and livelihoods are drowned, to the hills of Central America that confronts similar monstrous hurricanes, to the vast savannas of Africa where climate change has likewise become a matter of life and death as food and water becomes scarce. Not to forget the massive hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico and the eastern seaboard of North America. And if that is not enough, you may want to pay a visit to the Philippines right now."
Date: 21 November 2013
Time: 2pm to 3pm GMT
Food distributions to rural areas may have been the standard modus operandi in past decades, but today humanitarians are increasingly acting in urban areas and using a variety of distribution mechanisms. Humanitarians are using new technologies to implement cash and voucher programming and turning their expertise in these areas into advocacy and lessons sharing.
Please join us for this ALNAP/CaLP urban webinar which will present learnings from Oxfam and Concern’s experiences using cash and voucher programming in urban contexts. The webinar will be on Nov 21, 2013 at 2:00 PM GMT. Please register at
Please click here to register.
Concern will present their experiences using cash in social protection and livelihood programming in Nairobi, as well as their advocacy efforts which resulted in government taking up CTP programming as well. Oxfam will present their experiences with cash in WASH programming in Gaza.
Discussion will focus around what is new in the world of cash programming in urban areas, what lessons are emerging and how are these new methods changing the way humanitarians work in urban areas.
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.
View System Requirements
All the world’s nearly one billion hungry people could be lifted out of malnourishment on less than a quarter of the food that is wasted in the US, UK and Europe.
Fast Facts: Uncovering the Global Food Scandal by Think.Eat.Save. (More facts available at their webpage.)
The Think.Eat.Save campaign of the Save Food Initiative, is a partnership between UNEP, FAO and Messe Dusseldorf, an in support of the UN Secretary-General’s Zero Hunger Challenge.