Blog /

January 4, 2005

From Tsunami to Deshodaya


The Medium Term Plan – The Sarvodaya response to the National Calamity

A. National Calamity

Tsunami waves struck Sri Lanka on the morning of 26th December without any warning, causing a massive loss of life, destroying infrastructure, and rendering nearly a million people homeless in possibly the single most negative impact situation facing the nation of Sri Lanka.

B. Sarvodaya Response Action

Sarvodaya has taken action to support relief efforts in all affected areas, including Jaffna (effective from January 1st, following a personal visit by Dr.A.T.Ariyaratne to the North & East), and operating in a support capacity in the managing of refugee camps. We are now planning on moving into the second phase of preventive care – trauma management, income support, resettlement, and later rehabilitation related response commitments.

C. Status and Response Action as assessed at a meeting of the Committee of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce

With few exceptions, a majority of the initiatives and Government-led response actions were assessed as inadequate. There is a lack of planning information, needs assessments, effective communication, and human resources. Due to inappropriate allocation of relief to actual needs, poor networking, ineffective and wasteful management of camps, and a lack of required levels of leadership, there has been no effective allocation of resources to priority areas.

D. Present Status of Sarvodaya initiatives

The immediate response action, planning, resource allocation, information availability, matching needs with resources, accountability and transparency of collections and delivery, effectiveness of management and delivery systems, effectiveness of identification of needs, mobilization of human resources, identification of issues, priority of action responses, effectiveness of resource utilization and identification of medium term issues and leadership actions are all assessed as amongst the best in operation within the island.

E. Objective of Sarvodaya

To plan and implement response action to realize the objective of “From Tsunami to Deshodaya (National Re-awakening)”

F. The Medium Term Planning

The following were identified as the medium-term issues requiring the preparation of project proposals and action plans:

* Camp Management
* Trauma Management through psycho-spiritual healing
* Medical and Preventive Health care
* Water and Sanitation
* Housing
* Re-establishment of micro-enterprises, especially small traders and entrepreneurs and micro-finance issues
* Children and Orphans
* Water (supply and cleaning up contaminated sources)
* Electricity
* Eco-System and Environment
* Income Support
* Nutrition Management and Food Cards for victims pending re-settlement
* Re- settlement of victims
* Education continuity of children
* Legal Issues including recovery of copies of lost documents
* Management of negative regulatory and actions of officials
* Women-related issues
* Indirectly impacted persons future needs
* Law, order and Governance issues
* Need for improved networks especially linking Government and its National Disaster Recovery Plan with other international bodies and NGO’s
(ensure no duplication of effort)
* Realization of MDG’s latest by 2015
* Adopting a village/district scheme and supporting the action strategies related above will require the preparation of proposals to mobilize service capability in the following areas
* assuring best practice and technology transfers
* setting up links to professional/advisory and national disaster management institutions
* Communications
* Logistics
* Networking and Relationship Management re: International Community/Private Sector/Donors/Government/Religious Institutions and Diaspora
* Information and Communication Technology (ICT)
* Need for recruitment of new volunteers and their appropriate training and development linked to tasks ahead
* Ensuring tax transparency and exemptions from banking charges
* Cash flow and funds management
* Finance, Control, Audit systems and procedures assuring effective and good governance within Sarvodaya with highest standards of accountability and transparency in place especially in regard to cash and goods received from donors (Other issues of importance and even priority outside the vision and capability of Sarvodaya were left out)

G. Project Proposals

A Sarvodaya team supported by private sector and foreign volunteers to prepare the above under the directions of the Executive Director and supported by the Heads of Functions of Sarvodaya Projects/Technical/Finance/Planning/Suwa Setha/SEEDS. Having recognized the enormity of the task ahead and our capabilities and capacities it was agreed that the following priority areas should be addressed immediately while recognizing the relief with love and care.
* Women, Children and Orphans (the Suwa Setha Orphans Project requires publicity in order to mobilize resources and identify orphans)
* Water and sanitation (contaminated water cleaning being on a district basis and not restricted to any served community)
* Housing which ensures re-settlements in areas as close as possible to original locations; look into option of initially setting up temporary housing to facilitate early re-settlement and then move affected people to purpose-built individual as well as multiple level housing to meet any restrictions on land allocations (subject to government policies)
* Psychological and Spiritual Healing (linking effectively with local experts and diaspora where appropriate, especially seeking support to improve capability in logistics management, developing training modules and disaster-related counseling technology transfer)
* Camp Management, with improved sanitation and garbage disposal and resettlement (close networking with GA’s) limiting resources to support identified impacted persons only
* Trade and Micro-Finance
* Health and Preventive Care Management (ensure networking and effectiveness of distribution of drugs, vaccinations and no drug overdoses)
* Communications (effectiveness of publicity and fund raising) and MIS with own camps census and linking with University survey/SEEDS survey and surveys arranged via district chambers; linking this information to support planning for relief, camp management, housing and finance
* Disaster Management support
* Services Support and Networking including close networks to regulatory and implementing agencies of government

H. Executive Council

An appropriate Council to support the above Re-Awakening Programme will be set up to
support the Sarvodaya leadership teams supported by professional volunteers.

Dr.Vinya S. Ariyaratne, M.D.,M.P.H., MSc.(Comm. Med).,M.D.(Comm.Med.)
Executive Director
Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement
Sarvodaya Headquarters
“Damsak Mandira”
98, Rawatawatta Road
Sri Lanka.
Tel. 94-11-2647159/2655255
Fax. 94-11-2656512
e-mail: [email protected]

Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement for the People in Need.