Immediately following crises, the provision of shelter and NFI assistance is a critical, life-saving intervention that provides the affected population with safety, protection from the elements, health risks and other factors that could increase their vulnerabilities. Depending on the nature of the crises, shelter and NFI interventions can either improve living conditions for vulnerable populations while they are displaced or can contribute to their safe return or relocation to areas where they can recover from the crises and resume their family and community life. Provision of shelter assistance shall always be a driver or stabilizing influence on post-crisis population movement.
Shelter/NFI & Hurricane Matthew
Category 4 Hurricane Matthew hit Haiti on October 4th 2016. Crossing the departments of Grand'Anse, South and Nippes, the hurricane caused major damages to crops, homes, schools and infrastructure. An estimated 2.1 million people have been affected. Of these, 1.4 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance and more than 237,000 houses were damaged or destroyed (of which 44% were completely destroyed). The Hurricane provoked the biggest humanitarian crisis in Haiti since the 2010 earthquake.
Since the onset of the response, IOM have been co-leading the Haiti Shelter/NFI Working Group supporting the Haitian government (DPC and UCLBP) by providing technical and strategic guidance to national and international shelter partners as well as coordination support.
Following the initial assessments and the significant damages caused by Hurricane Matthew to vital infrastructure, IOM overcame logistics impediments by providing coordinated, effective and timely distribution of relief items. Throughout its capacities, IOM managed and transported NFI stocks and emergency shelter and pre-positioned in the affected areas for rapid distribution on the ground.
Prepositioning of NFIs
In preparation for the Hurricane, IOM Haiti prepositioned 8,000 NFIs (including tarpaulins, Hygiene kits, Kitchen sets, collapsible H2O containers, and blankets) in Port-au-Prince, Gonaives, Jacmel, Jeremie and Les Cayes. The pre-positioning of the essential emergency relief items in the strategic locations throughout Haiti supported IOM in providing coordinated, effective and timely distribution of relief items to the affected families.
Management of common pipeline
The IOM logistic pipeline helped supporting the capacities of the Government of Haiti and the humanitarian community in the timely delivering life-saving commodities and supplies to the affected people. The significance of the pipeline was visible through the mobilization of in-kind contributions from different donors, along with the provision of logistic support for other humanitarian partners. Through the management of the NFI common pipeline, a total of 2200 metric tons of NFIs have been provided to 204,491 households
Shelter Working Group common
Through an on-going partnership with the European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO), the and United States Agency for International Development(USAID)IOM established dedicated Shelter/CCCM coordination teams at the national and decentralized levels as well as two sub-offices in Jérémie and Les Cayes. The National Shelter/NFI working group coordination team is based in Port-au-Prince.
A total of 86 Haitian and international sectorial partners have contributed to the first emergency response through the provision of tarpaulins, tools, provision of emergency NFIs such as blankets, jerry cans, hygiene kits and kitchen kits. Nearly a year since the hurricane, 36 shelter partners remain active of which 30 partners have ongoing or planned (and funded) activities until the end of the year on Building Back Safer (BBS) approach/campaign and early recovery shelter interventions.
The Shelter Working Group in close consultation with Haitian authorities have consolidated and disseminated technical guidelines and resources to provide technical guidance to shelter partners to ensure a homogenous and qualitative response. A total of 262 documents, tools, technical general guidelines and the results of the house damage assessment surveys have been conducted with the support of the IOM Data Management Unit on 120.000 buildings are available on the shelter cluster website
The overall aim of the Shelter WG is to ensure a harmonized and durable approach to reconstruction.Emphasis is focused on rural and remote communities to prevent secondary displacement towards peri-urban and urban centers and to enable farming communities to remain close to their livelihoods. Both at the national and departmental level coordination meetings are held regularly twice a month.
On July 31st 2017 the government presented the « Cadre Conceptuel Relèvement post Matthew, secteur logement” which provides the strategic direction to the shelter response during the recovery phase including four reference models for houses reconstructions.
Build Back Safer Campaign
IOM is also supporting a public awareness campaign designed around the “Build Back Safer” key messages identified by the Shelter Working Group. This campaign will ensure the mass diffusion of “Build Back Safer” key messages to the most vulnerable population affected by Hurricane Matthew. Based on Radio and TV Public Service Announcements, social media and community mobilization campaign will disseminate key messages throughout the Grand’Anse and South Departments to raise awareness and influence the public to incorporate safe construction techniques when rebuilding or repairing houses damaged by Hurricane Matthew.
Within the Shelter/NFI Working Group’s “Build Back Safer” framework a roof repair training curriculum has been developed to encourage and facilitate safer beneficiary led-reconstruction. The training program, which builds upon improved local construction techniques, encourages construction specialists to tackle house repair with a participatory, adaptable and innovative approach. In order to develop, reinforce, adapt and replicate the training module, two pilot centers were conducted in Grande Anse in Jeremie and Abricots. These experience has been already replicated by IOM/ Shelter/NFI Working Group coordination in the municipalities of Chambellan and Moron always in Grande Anse. As of today about 200 carpenters have been trained.