European Union brings relief to the victims of floods in East Kalimantan province
In response to severe flooding that submerged many parts of Indonesia’s East Kalimantan province in late May, the European Union is providing €50,000 (over 790 million rupiah) in humanitarian aid funding to assist the most affected communities. The aid will benefit over 8,600 people in some of the hardest hit localities in the villages of Sidodadi and Temindung Permai.
The EU funding supports the Indonesian Red Cross Society (PMI) in delivering crucial support to the most vulnerable communities through the distribution of emergency shelter materials and relief items, such as tarpaulins, blankets, cleaning products and basic household items. As the spread of the coronavirus remains a major concern, handwash gel, soap and masks will also be provided as a preventative measure. The assistance also ensures access to clean water, good hygiene services, as well as psychological support to the affected families.
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).
More than 41,000 people have been affected by the floods, hundreds of whom were displaced, after days of torrential downpours hit East Kalimantan in late May. The incessant rains triggered widespread flooding that inundated hundreds of homes in 11 villages throughout the provincial capital of Samarinda. Some main roads were subsequently submerged and electricity cut off while rising water levels in the Karang Mumus river and Benanga dam prompted authorities to declare a 14-day emergency response between 22 May and 4 June. Sidodadi and Temindung Permai are the worst-affected areas due to their close proximity to the river.
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 man-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 (https://ec.europa.eu/echo).
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.