Delegation of the European Union to Kazakhstan

EU provides relief to victims of drought in Kazakhstan

05/08/2021 - 11:44
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Nur-Sultan, 5 August 2021 – In response to the drought that has affected large parts of Kazakhstan since June, the European Union is providing €200,000 (over 100 million Kazakhstani tenges) in humanitarian funding to provide crucial support. The aid will benefit close to 6,000 people in some of the hardest hit areas in the provinces of Mangystau and Turkestan.

Photo copyrights: visitmangystau.kz

This EU funding supports the Red Crescent of Kazakhstan in delivering emergency relief assistance to those most affected through the distribution of cash to enable them to meet their daily needs after losing their livelihoods and food sources due to the drought. Awareness raising activities on health risks related to drought and extremely high temperatures such as heat stroke and fire safety are also being carried out.

The funding is part of the EU’s overall contribution to the Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC).

Since early July, Kazakhstan’s western and southern regions have experienced a severe heatwave that triggered widespread drought in many areas. The dry spell has caused natural reservoirs to dry up and land to become arid, leading to a lack of natural grazing feed and water resources for animals. As a result, a number of livestock, the key source of livelihoods for many in the country, have perished. So far, over 70,000 people have been affected, the majority of which are smallholder herders whose income is entirely dependent on their livestock. More than 84 per cent of those reportedly affected are located in Mangystau province.

Background

The European Union together with its Member States is the world's leading donor of humanitarian aid. Relief assistance is an expression of European solidarity towards people in need around the world. It aims to save lives, prevent and alleviate human suffering, and safeguard the integrity and human dignity of populations affected by natural disasters and human-made crises.

Through its European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO), the European Union helps over 120 million victims of conflicts and disasters every year. For more information, please visit ECHO's website.

The European Commission has signed a €3 million humanitarian contribution agreement with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) to support the Federation's Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF). Funds from the DREF are mainly allocated to “small-scale” disasters – those that do not give rise to a formal international appeal.

The Disaster Relief Emergency Fund was established in 1985 and is supported by contributions from donors. Each time a National Red Cross or Red Crescent Society needs immediate financial support to respond to a disaster, it can request funds from the DREF. For small-scale disasters, the IFRC allocates grants from the Fund, which can then be replenished by the donors. The contribution agreement between the IFRC and ECHO enables the latter to replenish the DREF for agreed operations (that fit in with its humanitarian mandate) up to a total of €3 million.

For further information, please contact:

Peter Biro, Regional Information Officer for Asia and the Pacific, European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO): peter.biro@echofield.eu, Ms. Elnura Abakanova, Communications Officer, EU Delegation to Kazakhstan, e-mail: elnura.abakanova@eeas.europa.eu, @EUinKazakhstan