Pakistan Emergency Response For IDP
At the outset of a major humanitarian crisis unfolding by the displacement of large populations, the UN refugee agency was requested by the Government of Pakistan to assist in registering Internally Displaced People (IDPs) of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and Swat District. The Ministry of States and Frontier Regions (SAFRON) was designated as the coordinating ministry for IDP registration outside the NWFP. Thus, UNHCR being the lead agency for Protection, Camp Management, and Shelter Cluster was to assist the Government of Pakistan to carry out registration of IDPs.
SACH- Struggle for Change being an implementing partner of UNHCR was assigned to carry out a pre-mapping exercise in various parts of Rawalpindi and Attock districts. The objectives of the pre-mapping were to collect baseline information, identification of IDP concentration areas, and the situation overview in terms of living conditions and needs of IDPs. The pre-mapping was a pre-requisite for the registration of IDPs, which was a critical step in the management of the crisis.
SACH was to conduct registration of IDP families accommodated with host families and/or in rented accommodation in various parts of Rawalpindi and Attock districts. The exercise was coordinated in all its phases with the Chief Commissionerate Afghan Refugees (CCAR) and the district government officials to achieve maximum population coverage, while ensuring consistent result. SACH issued IDPs with a card for better identification and protection and to avail relief.
Majority of the IDPs from FATA and Swat district of NWFP arrived in various parts of Rawalpindi and Attock districts with little or no essential support. The average family size was 06 individuals, with a high number of women and children. No formal statistics were available for those IDPs living with host families, relatives and/or in rented accommodation. An organized registration exercise was conducted to overcome not only the population fixing, but also to obtain a more general background of the IDP population with subsequent assistance requirements.
Based on SACH’s expertise in addressing issues of displacement, SACH focused on the following to produce desired outputs:
A right based approach was adopted by SACH throughout the project cycle, as it is a cross-cutting theme in all SACH’s activities.
The project was initiated on 15th of April, 2009. A team with specific linguistic and technical expertise had to be put together to implement the activities. Thus, sixteen field assistants inclusive of a team leader (gender balance was taken into account) with Pashto language proficiency and field work experience were hired to carry out the registration of IDPs. This was done by recording detailed information about each member on the case and highlighting the vulnerabilities, if any; the health status; as well as the educational background and any other concern. The registration forms were on behalf of SAFRON provided by UNHCR, carefully numbered. The form was in three copies, one of which was given to the IDP, one was kept for SACH record, and one was forwarded to UNHCR. Additionally, for inactive cases, respective card was attached to the form and returned to UNHCR.
The project interventions proceeded both through door-to-door approach, as well as at designated points for the verification and issuance of cards. 9978 cases / 53558 persons were verified and cards were issued accordingly. 3336 cases were inactive; cards were missing for 07 cases; and at the time of closure of the initiative, 37 cases/264 persons were still pending with UNHCR. 44 cases/212 persons when contacted stated that they would not take the cards.
Prior to the distribution, the location of distribution points and warehouses were identified, hired and the stocking of kits was ensured.
A team of 16 field assistants started the stocking on 19th of November 2009, whereas distribution in Attock and Taxila to 2433 PoC was completed on 26th of November, 2009. The team moved to Rawalpindi, Allahabad and started operations from 1st of December, 2009. Distribution in Rawalpindi was completed on 7th of January, 2010. A total of 4825 kits were received and distributed. Out of the list provided by UNHCR, families that were contacted but did not come to receive the kits totaled to 933.