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Kachin State

More than 20,000 beneficiaries in 2014

The 17-year ceasefire between the Myanmar army (Tatmadaw) and the independent armed group Kachin (KIO) has been broken since June 2011 in the semi-autonomous mountainous region of the State of Kachin. As a result, at this moment in time almost 90,000 people are displaced in more than 100 camps in areas either controlled by government actors or independent ethnic Kachin organisations. Another section of the Kachin population that has fallen victim to the conflicts (around 20,000 people) has also taken refuge in camps on the other side of the border, in China.

In mid-December 2012, the conflict greatly intensified; the government army reinforced its positions surrounding the general rebel district. Two major waves of conflict (from October to December 2013, then in April 2014) were responsible for displacing 10,000 people.

Even though, from a diplomatic perspective, the two parties have been engaged in a peace process (on a national as well as a local level) since February 2013, uncertainty remains, notably with regard to the resumption of confrontations that continue to threaten the stability of the region and the lives of the populations.

With the support of the OFDA/USAID, ECHO, OCHA, and UNICEF, SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL has been able to put the following activities into place:

Construction of semi-permanent emergency latrines in the displaced person camps, communal showers, hand-washing stations, water-treatment units, 
wells, sand filters; construction and refurbishment of harnessed river water treatment plants, drainage networks, wells; refurbishment of rainwater recuperation systems; emptying latrines; wastewater management; water supply, water quality testing; distribution of water hygiene kits and soap; hygiene promotion training sessions, creation of training courses and committees in water management, hygiene and sanitation, maintenance of facilities, waste management and follow-ups on hygiene practices; training courses in assessments and emergency response; support in the production of vegetables (interior gardens, sack gardens or bagriculture); income-generating activities (distribution of allowances to support micro-entrepreneurs).

Rakhine State 

More than 75,000 beneficiaries in 2014

Rakhine, the second poorest State in Myanmar, is characterised by its significantly dense population, a high rate of malnutrition, low incomes, a lack of equipment and facilities; on top of which natural disasters (mostly storms and flooding) are frequent in the region. As an example, the cyclone Giri hit the State of Rakhine on October 22, 2010, affecting 260,000 people and having a devastating effect on their housing and food security.

SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL responded to this emergency and helped the populations to recover from the crisis and to develop their resilience capacities. In June and in October 2012, two waves of violence between the ethnic minorities, Rakhine (Buddhists) and the unofficially recognised Rohingya (Muslims) led to the forced displacement of around 140,000 people. Today, we estimate that around 116,000 people are still living precariously in camps. Since October 2012, SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL has been carrying out work on water, hygiene and sanitation in the most populated camps and the allocated host villages of the capital of Rakhine, Sittwe, but also in the isolated camps and villages of the Pauktaw and Rathedaung townships. In order to respond to the emergency, SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL has notably initiated a major operation in water provision by boat, to allow the displaced populations access to drinking water during the dry season.

The conflict represents major challenges for the stability of Myanmar, placing the humanitarian community at the centre of a political problem that can only be resolved by putting into place sustainable solutions within an extremely complex context for implementation, among community tensions.

With the support of the OFDA/USAID, ECHO, OCHA, and UNICEF, SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL has been able to put the following activities into place:

Treatment and supply of water, construction and maintenance of the sludge treatment plant and units, construction of latrines, construction of drainage networks, construction of wells, refurbishment of reservoirs, refurbishment of latrines, emptying and maintenance of the latrines, installation of hand-washing stations, installation of rainwater recuperation systems, chlorination, waste management, water quality tests, distribution of hygiene kits, distribution of cleaning material for the latrines, distribution of ceramic water filters and training courses to explain how to use them, hygiene promotion sessions.

Dry zone

The Dry Zone located at the centre of Myanmar is characterised by a fragile ecosystem that has adverse impacts on availability and access to water. SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL has been acting since 2011 in this region located South of Sagaing division and North of Magway Division. The last program implemented with the support of the Danish cooperation (DANIDA) ended in May 2015. Its goal was to improve access to water for isolated villages in the municipalities of Monywa, Yinmabin and Yesagyo. Our activities there aimed at strengthening the populations’ livelihoods suffering from the Dry Zone, through the exploitation and sustainable management of water resources, particularly through the implementation of village committees in charge of providing water to the community.

Myanmar was hit by unusual floods in July and August 2015, affecting about 1.7 million people and twelve of the country’s fourteen States and divisions. Agricultural lands, roadways, railways, bridges and houses were destroyed by torrential rains. On July 30th, Myanmar proclaimed a state of emergency in the western part of the country, in the 4 most affected regions: Magway and Sagaing divisions, Chin and Rakhine States. In reaction, SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL provided an emergency response by conducting assessments in 41 villages of Sagaing division. The results indicated that approximately 5,000 households were affected; more than 600 water points were flooded and potentially contaminated, affecting about 500 farmers (that reported a partial loss of their field) and about 200 houses (also partially affected by the floods).

Activities: In its first emergency phase, and during the first month of its intervention, SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL focused on cleaning and chlorinating
water points reserved for consumption. This phase also focused on the distribution of kits containing equipment for latrines and hygiene kits and on cleaning main access roads through Cash for Work activities (CFW) in the Sagaing division.

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