Crisis Response - July, 2006

Current crises and “forgotten” disasters.

Current Crises

The unexpected turn of events in the Middle East and the new tragedy in Indonesia have each brought enquiries from some of those within our community.

  • Middle East: Ongoing conflict in Israel, the Occupied Palestinian Territories and Lebanon has seen more than 400 people killed and 500,000 displaced. Urgent international humanitarian assistance has been requested, including water, sanitation, medical supplies, materials for shelter&construction and fire-fighting equipment. The UN has today warned that, in Lebanon, the humanitarian crisis is worsening by the hour.
  • Indonesia: Almost 600 people are reported dead following the recent tsunami in Java, Indonesia. Damage occurred along 220km of coastline, and 50,000 people have been left homeless. Survivors are trying to return to normal life but, with a lot of infrastructure destroyed, they face many difficulties. Needs include permanent shelter, food, blankets, medicines, tents, thermoses, generators and medical services.

If your organisation is seeking partners in response to these situations, please let us know of your programmes and we would be happy to feature your needs, as appropriate. Please email us .

“Forgotten” Crises

All too easily, crises drop away from international interest. As part of Global Hand’s commitment to best practice, we want to be careful that we retain focus on situations which remain in need, long after the tragic events that brought public attention. A recent example is the Indonesian earthquake that occurred this May. It would be possible for it to fade from the common mindset, yet reports indicate that the response has been very inadequate and much need remains in the area (see ).

Looking further back, however, the plight of the “forgotten” is apparent in many situations which feature too little in the press. We have found lists of these that you may find of interest. We plan to feature these in the Library section, but are offering them here for immediate ease of reference.

Some are country specific, and include such areas as the Congo , Chechnya , Haiti , Somalia , Sudan , Colombia , Uganda ,Ivory Coast (Côte d’Ivoire) and Nepal .

Others are need specific, featuring problems such as AIDS, asylum seekers, child prostitution and child soldiers.

UNITED NATIONS LISTING: ’10 Stories the world should hear more about’ – 2006

Concerned that some issues continue not to receive sustained media attention or slip off the radar screen, the United Nations Department of Public Information (DPI) has unveiled a new list of"Ten Stories the World Should Hear More About."

MSF LISTING:“Top 10 most under reported humanitarian stories of 2005”

Every year, Doctors Without Borders issues its annual list of what it considers to be the most underreported humanitarian stories of the year. MSF compiles the list to call attention to crises that were largely overlooked by the media.

ALERTNET LISTING:“Top 10 ‘forgotten’ emergencies”

AlertNet asked more than 100 humanitarian professionals, media personalities, academics and activists which of the world’s‘forgotten’emergencies they wanted the global media to focus on in 2005. Here are their top choices, with basic facts on each emergency.