What are the needs?
Indonesia is the world's largest archipelago. It is located on the 'ring of fire', one of the most disaster-prone regions in the world. The country has many active volcanoes near population centres and is frequently shaken by strong earthquakes. These natural disasters can lead to widespread destruction causing large-scale displacement of communities. In October 2010 a tsunami in Mentawai off Sumatra and the volcanic eruption of Mount Merapi in Java caused more than 600 deaths and displaced hundreds of thousands of people. In 2009, the islands of Sumatra and Java were both struck by earthquakes above 7 on the Richter scale. Such natural disasters leave inhabitants in need of temporary shelter, clean water and sanitation, primary health care, basic household items and hygiene awareness. The size of the country and an underdeveloped infrastructure often makes it difficult to reach victims rapidly.
How are we helping?
ECHO is currently helping strengthen the disaster preparedness and resilience of Indonesia’s communities through its Disaster Preparedness Programme DIPECHO. Under 2012-2013 programme for Southeast Asia worth €11 million, ECHO has allocated some €1.57 million for projects in Indonesia which will seek to reduce the effects of natural disasters on vulnerable communities. These projects strengthen the local disaster preparedness capacity by supporting community-based activities, local capacity building, early warning systems, and public awareness campaigns. Projects are being implemented by implementing partners in the islands of Lombok, Flores, Sumbawa, Nusa Tenggara Timur and Irian Jaya. In addition, the country will benefit from regional initiatives notably through the enhancing of the national Red Cross and Red Crescent capacity to build safer and more resilient communities and through the implementation of AADMER’s Work programme to facilitate the regional civil society’s dialogue with ASEAN bodies.