Yearly Archives: 2014

Developing a strong network, where each organization can learn and apply the Sphere standards to improve their humanitarian accountability is one of Mr. Kep Kannaro’s goals. Kannaro, the new Sphere Focal Point for Cambodia, is also the Cambodian Humanitarian Forum’s (CHF)[1] Chairperson and Executive Director of Partnership for Development in Kampuchea (PADEK).

In 2011, Kannaro participated in CWS-P/A Sphere training for the first time. Shortly afterward, Cambodia experienced massive floods. He immediately initiated an emergency response proposal, integrating the Sphere standards. “It was very difficult to put into practice,” admitted Kannaro. “We’ve been blamed for not responding as quickly as we should because of time taken by the assessments. However, the results were positive and the donors were really satisfied.”

Convinced about the potential of the Sphere standards and the importance to enhance quality and accountability of humanitarian response in Cambodia, Kannaro wanted to enhance the expertise of the Cambodian civil society organizations.

In 2012, with the support of USAID Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA) and Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC), Kannaro created the Cambodian Humanitarian Forum, a network of national organizations dedicated to strengthening emergency response capacities of national organizations. Since its creation, CHF has organized several capacity building initiatives, including Sphere standards trainings, and established an information and resource-sharing center.

CWS-P/A approached CHF this year based on a consultative process with some Cambodian organizations about the possibility of having a Sphere Country Focal Point in Cambodia. CHF accepted this role. As Chairperson of CHF, Kannaro took it as an opportunity to learn from his peers in the region and to transfer the acquired knowledge to his Cambodian counterparts.

“Awareness has increased and standards are more integrated in their emergency response after the training given by the forum.”

Today, Kannaro is proud of the progress made by Cambodian non-profits who benefited from the trainings. “Awareness has increased and standards are more integrated into their emergency response after the training given by the forum [CHF].” He also emphasized the challenges ahead. Despite the progress, he admitted, “Not many organizations are aware about the Sphere standards, and we also need to work closely with the government to mainstream those standards into the humanitarian response.”

Kannaro is enthusiastic about how the Sphere standards positively impact humanitarian response. His goal is to advocate for a proper disaster response law that would integrate the minimum standards. “If we can integrate standards in the law, more NGOs will apply them.” With a smile and positive outlook, Kannaro concluded, “It will be difficult, but we can make it.”

Kannaro and CHF exemplify of how capacity building and an effective networking platform can strengthen the promotion and application of the Sphere standards in humanitarian programs. They also demonstrate the importance of having Sphere champions, the ones who can inspire, empower, and engage more organizations for improving humanitarian effectiveness and enhancing the quality of aid delivery to the communities.

In October 2014, Kannaro was among ten Sphere country focal points who participated in the Sphere Focal Point Forum in Bangkok, Thailand. The event encouraged candid discussion, peer learning, and joint advocacy while enabling a sense of community among Sphere practitioners across Asia. Speaking at the event about his role as the Sphere Country Focal Point, Kannaro shared, “My vision for the future is promoting awareness and the ability to apply Sphere among the network [CHF] members; secondly, to work with government line departments and ministries to integrate Sphere standards into disaster management law; and thirdly, to work together to apply and build awareness among community members so they know about the assistance they are receiving.”

[1] CHF is a network of national NGOs and civil society organizations working in Cambodia which aims to improve humanitarian actions for saving lives in communities during emergency through capacity building and training, accountability, coordination and cooperation, and quality humanitarian standard. http://www.chfcambodia.net/

As the Sphere regional partner in Asia, Community World Service Asia supports the promotion and implementation of the Sphere standards training, Q&A deployments, technical support, and events such as this forum. In collaboration with The Sphere Project, we organized the Sphere Focal Point Forum, twice, in 2011 and in 2014. This year’s Forum was jointly financed by The Sphere Project, Diakonie-Sweden, Act for Peace and Community World Service Asia.

Before Raheema participated in adult literacy and vocational training, she faced difficulty in meeting her family’s needs. She lives with her four children and husband who earns a meager daily wage in Karo Mallah Village, Thatta. Raheema always wanted her children to be educated; she enrolled two of her children (one girl and one boy) in school, but due to financial constraints she was unable to continue her daughter’s education. While describing her concerns, she said, “If my children are not well, I am unable to take them to a hospital since I don’t have money.”

Due to poverty and social barriers, Raheema did not receive an education; however, her passion to learn motivated her to join the adult literacy center and vocational training center established by Community World Service Asia. Learning to read and write, she began passing on these basic skills to her children.

Because of her fine skills in appliqué work; she was selected as a master trainer which gave her an opportunity to teach the same skill to other women. An exposure visit to markets in Karachi enabled Raheema to understand the market trends, designs, color scheming, and how she can utilize her skills for a variety of products. “With assistance from Community World Service Asia, I received two orders from the buyers in Karachi, for myself and also for other trainees in my village,” she shared.

“I managed to purchase stationery, uniforms, and paid other expenses with my income in order to reenroll my children in school.”

Raheema generates income by making embroidered suits, pillow covers, bed sheets, and other products. She is now hopeful to manage the educational expenses of her children. “I am thankful to Community World Service Asia for giving me the skills, exposure, and a way to earn a living. I have good appliqué work skill; initially the products I used to make were only catering to the market in my village and surrounding areas. The exposure visits enabled me to enhance my marketing knowledge and now by utilizing the same skill I can make a variety of colorful products with beautiful designs.”

Community World Service Asia with financial support from Christian Aid (CA) is successfully implementing the project, Alleviating Poverty through Women’s Empowerment and Livelihoods Development with a Disaster Resilient Approach in Union Council (UC) Bijora, Thatta, Pakistan – Phase II. The project aims to reduce poverty and gender inequality among highly marginalized women and men through socio-economic empowerment and improved disaster resilience in disaster prone area of Thatta.

As a child, Kazbano, dreamed of obtaining an education, but cultural constraints and poor economic conditions prevented her from achieving her goal. At the age of 40, she is a mother of five children residing in Doso Himaiti Village, Thatta. “My parents were not educated; therefore, I was unable to convince them to send me to the nearest school in my village. I also got married at an early age,” she shared with grief.

A literate woman can support her father and husband with income generation. She can also contribute well in the upbringing of her children and make them a noble citizen.

Kazbano highlighted that illiteracy in her community prevents understanding on the importance of education. The mobility of women and girls is also limited, reducing their opportunity to acquire skills or education outside of their homes.

Her hope was restored when Community World Service Asia engaged the community through mobilization meetings and the formation of a community organization. Impressed by the confidence of female social mobilizers, she found the interest to learn revive in her. She requested her husband to agree to her participation in the adult literacy center. “Initially he resisted because he was concerned about our children, but later he allowed me to join the center with hope that if I am educated, I can also support my children for their education.”

The phonetic method adopted by the trainers at the center made learning much easier. “I am now able to read and write small paragraphs, read Sindhi newspapers, small sentences from books, sign boards, doctors’ names in hospitals, etc. I can also read medicine names as well as the expiry date. Now, I can support my children to acquire quality education. I am very thankful to Community World Service Asia for their development efforts for rural women like me.”

Community World Service Asia with financial support from Christian Aid (CA) is successfully implementing the project, Alleviating Poverty through Women’s Empowerment and Livelihoods Development with a Disaster Resilient Approach in Union Council (UC) Bijora, Thatta, Pakistan – Phase II. The project aims to reduce poverty and gender inequality among highly marginalized women and men through socio-economic empowerment and improved disaster resilience in disaster prone area of Thatta.

Supporting Healthy Living in Shangla
As a consequence of multiple disasters since 2005, Shangla’s health facilities were severely damaged. In 2011, Community World Service Asia initiated preventive and curative health care services in the remote district through two health facilities.
As a consequence of multiple disasters since 2005, Shangla’s health facilities were severely damaged. In 2011, Community World Service Asia initiated preventive and curative health care services in the remote district through two health facilities.
As a consequence of multiple disasters since 2005, Shangla’s health facilities were severely damaged. In 2011, Community World Service Asia initiated preventive and curative health care services in the remote district through two health facilities.
The provision of health education and professionally staffed out-patient departments, fully equipped with Disease Early Warning System (DEWS) and Health Information System (HIS), significantly improved access and the quality of health care.
The provision of health education and professionally staffed out-patient departments, fully equipped with Disease Early Warning System (DEWS) and Health Information System (HIS), significantly improved access and the quality of health care.
The provision of health education and professionally staffed out-patient departments, fully equipped with Disease Early Warning System (DEWS) and Health Information System (HIS), significantly improved access and the quality of health care.
The primary focus is to improve mother and child health in Shangla.
The primary focus is to improve mother and child health in Shangla.
The primary focus is to improve mother and child health in Shangla.
Improved mother and child health care has significantly reduced the maternal and infant mortality rates.
Improved mother and child health care has significantly reduced the maternal and infant mortality rates.
Improved mother and child health care has significantly reduced the maternal and infant mortality rates.
56,041 community members benefited from curative and preventive health during 2014.
56,041 community members benefited from curative and preventive health during 2014.
56,041 community members benefited from curative and preventive health during 2014.
More than 10,000 women and children were assessed for nutritional status.
More than 10,000 women and children were assessed for nutritional status.
More than 10,000 women and children were assessed for nutritional status.
12,936 women received reproductive health care.
12,936 women received reproductive health care.
12,936 women received reproductive health care.
40 birth attendants were trained, who further conducted 551 safe deliveries.
40 birth attendants were trained, who further conducted 551 safe deliveries.
40 birth attendants were trained, who further conducted 551 safe deliveries.
A delivery room functions in Alpuri, making safe delivery possible 24 hours a day.
A delivery room functions in Alpuri, making safe delivery possible 24 hours a day.
A delivery room functions in Alpuri, making safe delivery possible 24 hours a day.
39,973 individuals participated in health education sessions, including staff from the Government Health Department to establish linkages with the local community.
39,973 individuals participated in health education sessions, including staff from the Government Health Department to establish linkages with the local community.
39,973 individuals participated in health education sessions, including staff from the Government Health Department to establish linkages with the local community.
The assessment of malnourished women and children assisted in screening and referring cases.
The assessment of malnourished women and children assisted in screening and referring cases.
The assessment of malnourished women and children assisted in screening and referring cases.
An impact that lasts.
An impact that lasts.
An impact that lasts.
Regular community mobilization meetings are held with religious leaders and elders to emphasize the importance of training local women to conduct safe deliveries. 425 safe delivery kits and hygiene kits have been distributed among pregnant women.
Regular community mobilization meetings are held with religious leaders and elders to emphasize the importance of training local women to conduct safe deliveries. 425 safe delivery kits and hygiene kits have been distributed among pregnant women.
Regular community mobilization meetings are held with religious leaders and elders to emphasize the importance of training local women to conduct safe deliveries. 425 safe delivery kits and hygiene kits have been distributed among pregnant women.
Community World Service Asia also supports the government’s monthly anti-polio campaigns to eradicate this disease from the district. The provision of staff and transport to reach far flung areas is appreciated by the District Administration.
Community World Service Asia also supports the government’s monthly anti-polio campaigns to eradicate this disease from the district. The provision of staff and transport to reach far flung areas is appreciated by the District Administration.
Community World Service Asia also supports the government’s monthly anti-polio campaigns to eradicate this disease from the district. The provision of staff and transport to reach far flung areas is appreciated by the District Administration.