05/19/2016

Transition towards Peace in Khyber Agency, FATA

As of May 3, 2016 total 112,022 families have returned to Khyber agency including 40,094 unregistered families. All the main tribes of Khyber Agency like Sipah, Shalober, Zakha khel, Malik din Khel, Qambar Khel, and Aka Khel have returned except few in Tirah valley and Sher Khel tribe.

As a result of the long unrest in the area, almost all infrastructures like roads, hospitals, schools, government buildings and houses of the populations are damaged either completely or partially. Majority of the families have lost their livelihood sources. The lands are barren, livestock have died or have fled to the mountains and become wild, shops and markets are severely damaged. The people are once again facing difficult circumstances. However this time they are hopeful as they have returned to their homes now. They are feeling secure in their villages. Many of them have plans to restart their own means of living. They are struggling in the agriculture and livestock sectors to resume their dignity.

A number of national and international organizations are already there along with the government departments to support them. Some organizations including JEN have applied for project NOC to the FATA secretariat and are hoping to start their projects soon. These organizations are working in different sectors like protection, education, NFIs, health, WASH, Nutrition, Food security and Livelihood etc.  With support from government and humanitarian actors, the people of Khyber Agency are very hopeful to restart their normal living as before crisis. They believe that their commitment with lives and livelihoods will transform eventually into a sustainable peace in Khyber Agency.


[Damaged house in Khyber Agency]
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[Agricultural land rehabilitated in Khyber Agency]
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[Community based water reservoir for irrigation]
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[Community receiving Agriculture tool kit]
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May 19, 2016 in Pakistan |

04/28/2016

2016- The year of Return to FATA

The latest round of returns started on 11 April 2016 to South Waziristan Agency (SWA) with 600 families. SWA is situated in North-West region of Pakistan called FATA (Federally Administered Tribal Area). Earlier 9,865 families have returned to SWA while 55,090 families are still waiting for their return. Government and Humanitarian Community have declared 2016 as the year of return and plan to return around 95% caseload (168,970 families) of the total displaced population in KP and FATA provinces. 

Government and humanitarian community have set embarkation point for returnees to get facilitation while returning. Each returning family receives RFC (Return Facilitation Card), a cellular SIM and ATM card. Each returning family also receives PKR 10,000 and 25,000 from the Government for transportation and as return grants respectively. Proper designated waiting areas are established for males and females. NGO partners provide WASH services, entitlement information, Mine Risk Education, wheel chairs, and dignity kits.  A medical doctor, a female technician, and an ambulance are available, as well as a variety of essential medicines.  Up to 10,000 families are scheduled to return to South Waziristan Agency by mid-May.  This will be followed by returns to Kurram and Orakzai Agency.

JEN plans to complement the efforts of government and humanitarian community in South Waziristan Agency. In this regard, JEN will provide 1,850 returnee families with agriculture support including land reclamation/rehabilitation/preparation, provision of maize seeds, vegetable seeds, and agriculture tool kit, as well as trainings on agriculture farming and kitchen gardening.   


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April 28, 2016 in Pakistan |

Impact of School Health Committee (SHC) to prevent students from the use of unhygienic water

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I was impressed when to know this activity which staff done in schools. Children are innocent and they need protection from hard environment and poor health facilities. This is something lovely support to them. JEN and JEN staff is performing very well in such kind of activities. JEN is committed to provide healthy and hygienic environment in all targeted schools in Afghanistan. For ensuring the provision of safe water and awareness of safety to the students, JEN conducted water tests in all targeted schools, to know the quality of drinking water. Through these tests it was revealed that water in 25 schools is unhygienic and cannot be used for drinking purpose. JEN installed warning boards in all 25 schools. The purpose of the warning board installation is to prevent students from drinking contaminated water.

For further ensuring the safety of the students, School Health Committees (SHC) was established in these schools. SHC consist of 10 members. These members include 8-9 students and 1-2 teachers. These students were trained by JEN staff. Their training includes the following topics: Students’ health care, To aware the students about safe and unsafe water, Prevention from drinking of unsafe water, Discussion about warning board installation, Sharing the data with School Management committee (SMC), Reporting to DOE health officer on monthly basis (School Administration staff).

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SHC held group sessions & individual sessions as well with all students. Each morning, one member of SHC checked the personal hygiene of students. During the break time, they regularly monitor the students, whether they go for taking the contaminated water or not. If yes, then to facilitate them in detail not to use this water and explain why students cannot use. Besides, SHC work in collaboration with SMC. SMC is also working in the schools for the facilitation of students.

To measure the impact of the SHC, Pre and Post KAP survey was conducted in these 25 schools. In each school 10 students were interviewed. In total 10 questions were asked from each student.

•How many types of water are there?
•How many source of water do you know?
•Which source of water is healthy?
•Which source of water is unhealthy?
•Does water you drink smells bad?
•Does water you drink taste bad?
•Do you think water can carry diseases?
•What is hygiene of environment?
•What is important of handwashing?
•What is time of hands washing?

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Based on a certain criterion, three categories were established. On the basis of their answers, students were put in three categories i.e. high, middle and low. Students with very good knowledge and practices were put in the high category while students with moderate knowledge and practices were put in the middle category. Students with almost zero knowledge and practices were put in the low category. The Pre KAP (Knowledge, Attitude, practice) survey showed that there was no student in the “high” category, they know nothing about the asked questions answers. According to the Pre KAP data, 214 out of 250 students were placed in the “middle” category, while 36 out of 250 students were placed in the “low” category. After providing awareness to the students in detail about asked questions and unhygienic environment, post KAP survey showed 243 out of 250 students were placed in the “high” category as compared to 0 in the Pre KAP survey and there is no student in the “low” category currently.

The above data clearly shows that SHC is doing their responsibilities efficiently. They successfully spread the message to the students. SHC is sending their activity report to department of education on monthly basis. According to the post KAP survey result, the students are now aware of the side effect and disadvantage of using dirty water and no one is using the contaminated water now. Besides that there is a strong bond of connection between SMC and SHC in these schools and they are helping each other in carrying out the tasks.

Humaira Wahab
(Administrative and HR Assistant)

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April 28, 2016 in Afghanistan |

04/21/2016

Earthquake in Kumamoto; Tohoku’s Local Governments Send out Aid Personnel

We express our deep sympathy to the victims of the earthquake hit the Kumamoto Prefecture, Southern Japan.

With aftershocks continuing rattling Kumamoto, relief efforts on the ground are being run by the Self Defense Forces, the police, medical organizations and so on. Among them are local officials who have been dispatched from across the country including the city of Ishinomaki, Miyagi Prefecture, in the Tohoku region.

As Ishinomaki signed “Mutual Disaster Assistance Agreement” with Yatsushiro, Kumamoto Prefecture, on November 15, 2011, it was quick to send an aid convoy of its officials and trucks with drinking water and food to Yatsushiro on April 16.

After the Great East Earthquake five years ago, both public and private sectors in Kumamoto provided wide range of assistance for Tohoku’s disaster-stricken areas, including dispatching healthcare workers or engineers to local government offices, donating money, sending relief supplies, providing housing, offering job assistance, holding exchange meetings and so on.

Then it’s Tohoku’s turn.

Providing human resources or relief goods is not the only form of assistance.
Miyako City Council of Social Welfare, via its website, put out “actions people should truly take for victims in the wake of disaster”, lessons it learned from its experience, which it can tell all the more because it has gone through the Great East Earthquake.

http://www.miyako-shakyo.or.jp/

According to the website, during the post-disaster period, doing what you think is right for victims can have the opposite effect; if too many people visit disaster cites to participate in volunteer activities, that can cause traffic jam; sending relief goods individually can create extra work for victims like sorting out to distribute them.
Our immediate focus should be as follows:

(1) if possible, make a donation or help victims by buying local products;

(2) refrain from sending relief goods after listening media reports on what victims are in need of (since the plight of the victims changes every day so much so that they will have received more than enough relief goods by the time they get the delivery from you.)

【Ishonomaki city, April, 2011:They are preparing meals outdoor during the Great East Earthquake.】
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【Ishonomaki city, April, 2011:They are distributing clothing during the Great East Earthquake.】
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【Ishonomaki city, April, 2016: From Hiyoriyama hill; You can see Kdonowaki Elementary School enclosed by fences a short distance back from the cherry trees, Kitakami river and the Pacific Ocean in the distance.】
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We can provide the very assistance because we experienced the Great East Japan Earthquake. In this year of 2016 as well, JEN is committed to working on disaster recovery along with the disaster victims.

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April 21, 2016 in Tohoku Earthquake |

DRR Refreshment Training for Master Trainers

JEN team organized two day training for master trainers regarding Disaster risk reduction (DRR). Proceedings of the training for disaster risk reduction were very interesting and greatly appreciated by the concerned department and participants. I have seen strong potential of publicizing the standard information that must be a program that could have a chance to grow further in the future.

The head of department appreciated JEN and said through your program we can take basics of safety from paper to practice.

There was a story reminded by the member of PDP (Provincial Disaster Prepares program) who said that:
it was one evening the sun was going down, darkness was coming slowly. I was walking toward river and seen a boy jumped from a wall to the ground and broke his leg. I immediately run to him and tried to help him, asked reason for the panic. He said, I was on the wall to fix some cracks. I felt that the wall is shacking. I thought earthquake is coming so I jumped. The person said I was not familiar with first aid and tried to take him to the hospital. So without any proper preparation, I just hold him on my shoulder and moved toward hospital. When I reached the hospital the doctors told me that I have made a huge mistake and carried the person without preparation and stabilizing his injured location, which resulted to bigger crack in his bone. He further added that instead of being happy that I helped someone, I was in a deep shame. From the day I promised myself to learn basic standards of providing support to others. So I have joined PDP. Although I have participated in many workshops and learned lots of things but I was not able to share my experiences with others.

Today I am happy that with support of JEN I will share my all experiences with others in my community.

[2 days DRR training session in Charikar office, JEN colleague share information regarding DRR]
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[A Master Trainer who is sharing his Ideas about DRR ]
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April 21, 2016 in Afghanistan |

Introduction of our staffs in Colombo office

Introduction of our staffs in Colombo office

We have started our new project to assist people returning from displacement to regain their livelihood through agriculture since March 22nd, 2016. This will be our 11th year since JEN started our project in Sri Lanka.  As this year will conclude our agricultural livelihood project in Northern part of Sri Lanka, all of the staffs need to be united stronger than ever.  Now, we have three offices in Sri Lanka; Kilinochchi, Mullaitivu and Colombo.  To assist all of the staffs and the project, we have two staffs in charge of back-office services in Colombo office. Let us introduce them today. 

Jonathan-san is responsible for administration and Aparna-san is in charge of finance.  Their job is not only working with internal staffs but also keeping good relationships with the relevant government officers, banks and other organizations.  Below is their self-introduction:

[Jonathan-san]
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I joined Japan Emergency NGO (JEN) Organization in June 2009. The main objective of joining JEN was to serve as an active member and extend the support that was needed in numerous projects they were handling to help the poor people to have a better livelihood. In 2005 JEN had many projects to support Tsunami affected areas in Southern and later in Eastern Provinces in Sri Lanka. In 2009 JEN had projects to support internally displaced people (IDP) in the Northern Province. I was privileged to work in this organization where I was a member to support the underprivileged people who were affected in the war.

My main job is Human resource management, Security management, Asset management, Procurement and stakeholder management.

Further considering new project, my goal is to do my best for JEN to support the people in the North. Also I believe it will help to develop livelihood of people in Northern Province of Sri Lanka. We Sri Lankans are thankful to JEN and people of Japan for their assistance in developing people’s lifestyle. My earnest hope is that JEN activities will expand in other parts of Sri Lanka as well.

[Aparna-san]
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I joined with JEN January 2010. I’m working here for past six years with wonderful International staff. Based on my interest in humanitarian work field I applied for the JEN Finance assistant post in 2010. I was really happy about that chance I got because that covers both my education experience and interest. I’m currently working as Finance Officer of JEN Colombo office. But depending on my duties I have gone to Kilinochchi, Mullaithive & Batticala projects sites several times and witnessed all good works JEN has done in war-damaged areas.

JEN work has good value in Sri Lanka because Sri Lankan Economy is based on Agriculture. JEN is helping the farmers by helping them to have a smooth supply of water for farming. When they have water they can cultivate whole year and no need to wait for rain.

About me I like animals. I have a pet dog in my home too. In my free time I really like to read books, watch English & Korean Dramas & Movies & listen to Music. And also I like to travel and watch beautiful places. In Sri Lanka there are many beautiful places to watch and most of the places have historical value. Now I‘m very happy about my life and my career goal with JEN is to get involved with their project and give my knowledge to their project in order to improve the lifestyle of the community.

【JEN is now accepting donations. Your help would be very much appreciated.
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April 21, 2016 in Sri Lanka |

04/17/2016

A report from JEN emergency support team-2

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The picture shows piles of waste that used to be the victims’ household items.
According to the team (as of 17th April), the victims’ needs on the ground were NFIs (Non-Food Items); and water, blankets, nappies for babies and elderlies such as necessities for everyday life.
Due to continuous aftershocks, the damages in the affected areas are changing rapidly, and so as needs on the ground. JEN has co-operated with the local authorities and we have organising the support activities.
Following the updates from the team will be posted soon here in the report.

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April 17, 2016 in Emergency Support, Kumamoto |

04/16/2016

A Report from JEN emergency support Team-1

Initial emergency support Team is sent to Kumamoto, Japan in 15th April, 2016. Their first mission was the research of quake damages in Kumamoto. 
T
he damages were seemed like very intensive, however, there was the main shock in the midnight of 16th April.

Due to the main shock, the situation completely changed; at the same time, entire member of the team in Kumamoto was safe.

Now, the team is working out what we can do and what the local people’s needs are.

Following the details from the team will be updated soon here in the report.

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April 16, 2016 in Emergency Support, Kumamoto |

03/24/2016

Mysteries of Success in 2015 Project

Province Name: Parwan

Districts Names: Charikar center and Shinwari districts

JEN-Afghanistan team successfully implemented JPF WASH 2015 project in district Charikar and Shinwari. It was not just implementation but it was a lesson learning process and a life time experience for all JEN’s staff. After regular coordination with DoE and Department of finance, JEN conducted a need assessment survey to know about community needs (WASH & Non WASH of schools). After project approval and informing DoE, we (Engineering team + Field Officers) went to have a site visit in targeted areas and had a long discussion with school administration and community leaders. In the meeting we briefed them regarding JEN vision, mission and goals/ objectives of the program (WASH+ Non WASH of Schools). We also gave them orientation of the program, community contribution, introducing construction companies and information sharing.
At the end of the session JEN, Community, School administration and DoE responsible person established a committee (Establishment of SMC) and signed a tripartite agreement.

During implementation of the project we carried out daily monitoring, weekly meetings with contractors, (discussion of progress of work, quality and quantity of construction according to specification of MoE), Risk management, weekly reports, Progress of work, supervision and evaluation.

As our operation areas were critical and complicated, we established strong coordination with community, stake holders and DoE due to which JEN was able to implement these projects.

Due to the transparency in JEN program, direct and indirect beneficiaries in the community appreciate JEN’s efforts and especially high quality of construction work.

The success of our construction projects was the result of JEN team great struggle and hard work, cooperation with each other, high inspiration and motivation to achieve goals and desire to help all vulnerable Afghan people in the target area to have a bright future for them.

[Project information meeting with SMC and DOE representative in Shinwari district]
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[Project layout of 6 class room building for Faiz Muhammad boy middle school in Shinwari district]
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[View of Wooden truss work of Faiz Muhammad boys middle school in Shinwari district]
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[Elegant view of 8 class room building of Darul Alum Markaz Parwan high school in charikar center]
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Shir Ali
JEN Afghanistan  Chief Engineer





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March 24, 2016 in Afghanistan |

Let’s Go Visit Disaster Sites

Five years have passed since the Great East Earthquake.

While “Intensive Reconstruction Period” set by the central government ends at the end of March, 2016, disaster sites have to make continued efforts to tackle recovery. The reality of recovery together with growing outflow of people from the disaster sites following the devastation is filling locals anxiety over whether their communities can sustain.

At the “Disaster Prevention Forum 2016” held at Sendai, Miyagi Prefecture on March 16, we heard the following messages come from a group working on local revitalization.

“Some visitors say ‘Sorry for coming to visit here so late.’ But it’s an enormous support for us that people continue visiting disaster sites.”
“I often hear people say ‘I get a feeling that visiting and seeing disaster sites will make locals unpleasant’. But I want those people to come here and learn how horrible the disaster is and how powerfully recovery is rolling forward.’”
“I want those people to visit disaster sites. I want the disaster sites to be their adopted hometowns.”

The city of Rikuzentakata, one of the worst-hit areas in Iwate Prefecture, revealed its comprehensive package, “Vision on Demographic Policy and Comprehensive Redevelopment Strategy for Improving Living Basics” in February, 2016. The package delivers a vision to address increasing the number of its supporters who love and keep coming to Rikuzentakata.

The eastern region on the Pacific Ocean have had the strength to withstand devastating disasters. Delicious cuisine comprised of local food from the ocean or the mountains will await you. Travel agencies or NPO’s are offering a lot of tours that go around the affected areas.

Please visit disaster sites!


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March 24, 2016 in Tohoku Earthquake |