The Zimbabwe Red Cross Society (ZRCS) has embarked on community resilience projects aimed at empowering communities so that they are able to withstand shocks such as those caused by recent disasters in Masvingo and Manicaland provinces.

By Staff Reporter

ZRCS wants to empower communities so that they are able to withstand future shocks caused by disasters

ZRCS wants to empower communities so that they are able to withstand future shocks caused by disasters

The five-year project which is being funded by the British Red Cross is being implemented in Masvingo’s Mwenezi district and Chipinge in Manicaland.

ZRCS secretary-general Maxwell Phiri said the community resilience project concept was meant to give communities ammunition to stand on their own without external support when disasters struck.

“Red Cross has shifted its focus from the remedial kind of assistance to building community resilience with the aim of empowering communities so that they are able to withstand future shocks caused by disasters,” Phiri told The Standard Style.

“The concept of resilience has emerged as a longer-term more cost-effective strategy for substantially improving regional or local capacity to withstand such shocks and stresses. The International Federation of Red Cross Framework for Community Resilience defines it as ‘the ability of individuals, communities, organisations, or countries exposed to disaster, crises and underlying vulnerabilities to anticipate, prepare for, reduce the impact of, cope with and recover from the effects of shocks and stresses without compromising their long-term prospects’.”
Phiri said their focus in Mwenezi and Chipinge was to equip communities so that they were able to stand on their own without external support.

“We want to improve livelihoods and resilience of communities in Chipinge and Mwenezi districts focusing on areas such as food security and livelihoods, water, sanitation and hygiene as well as disaster risk reduction,” he said.
Phiri said at the end of the day, communities and households would be better able to anticipate, adapt and respond to disasters at household and community level.

ZRCS is working with 1 000 beneficiaries in wards 16, 20 and 24 in Chipinge and another 1 000 in Mwenezi’s wards 5, 8 and 14. The beneficiaries are expected to increase to 2 500 in each district after four and half years.

Phiri said ZRCS was working with the Local Government ministry and other stakeholders to empower communities.

“ZRCS is setting up centres of excellence in both districts to help educate farmers on issues like water harvesting technologies, improved and climate smart agriculture with also a focus on better animal management,” Phiri said.

“The programme also includes the rehabilitation of water points in both districts and construction of water troughs. For purposes of sustainability, water point committees are also being trained. The project also provides training to help with hygiene promotion in schools and homes.”

Phiri said care givers would be trained to provide nutrition education to pregnant and lactating mothers. The trained mothers would be provided with support to set up nutrition gardens.

Under disaster risk reduction activities, focus will be given to equipping communities to be knowledgeable about their hazards and risks.

“ZRCS volunteers would receive training in first aid as well as support with first aid kits so that they are better equipped to provide first aid services,” Phiri said.

Source: The Standard

Zimbabwe Red Cross Society response in support of Xenophobia attack victims

BEITBRIDGE, 20 April 2015: The Zimbabwe Red Cross Society (ZRCS), a leading humanitarian agency, has mobilised volunteers, pre-positioned relief packs and hygiene kits in Beitbridge for the victims of xenophobia attacks who are returning from South Africa.

More than 400 expatriated Zimbabweans have so far received humanitarian assistance in the form of relief packages and telephone services from the ZRCS. At least 45 Disaster Response Team members have been dispatched from the ZRCS Matebeleland North provincial offices while relief materials worth USD25 000,00  which include food and non-food items such as blankets, shelter kits, buckets and kitchen sets have been mobilised to assist as the repatriated victims of xenophobia arrive in Beitbridge. 

“Whilst complementing the government’s humanitarian efforts in this intervention, the ZRCS is working in close cooperation with our movement partners, South Africa Red Cross Society (SARCS), the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the International Federation of Red Cross (IFRC) in our response work.

“In addition to the emergency relief materials, we are also assisting some of these vulnerable populations in restoring family links as some had been away for a while. Families have also been anxious of the fate of their relatives. So ZRCS is offering free telephone service to those who want to communicate with their families upon arrival,” said Mr Maxwell Phiri, Zimbabwe Red Cross Society Secretary General.

As part of the Red Cross regional response, in South Africa, the SARCS and ICRC indicate that in Greenwood Park where 475 foreigners are accommodated in a school, at least 61 people, mostly Mozambicans, Zimbabweans and Malawians, benefitted from the Red Cross phone service.

In Kwazulu Natal, the Red Cross has been actively involved at four sites through South Africa Red Cross Society for the past two weeks initially looking after over 5000 people providing hot meals in partnership with other relief agencies. The South African Red Cross Society is also providing psychosocial support through site visits, telephone services in partnership with the International Federation of the Red Cross (IFRC) to connect people to their families in respective countries, Health advocacy as well as blankets and First Aid. In Gauteng, the initial number looked after by the Red Cross was 500 but this has risen to 1500. 

Help others through the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society. Floods continue affecting many parts of the country and together with other partners where are reaching out to alleviate human suffering. Any donations particularly food relief, blankets and clothes are welcome. Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  WhatsApp or call +263773390810 or visit any Red Cross offices near you.

Continued rains around Zimbabwe have triggered emergencies with lives being claimed in the process. Alerts from Zimbabwe Red Cross Society Provincial Structures highlight varrying rain induced emergencies with affected areas in dire need of humanitarian intervention. The number of affected households as of the 4th of January 2015 is over 700 according to informatiom gathered. 

Following the incessant rains, floods have hit many parts of the country claiming 10 lives in Mashonaland West province and 1 six year old girl in Manicaland Province. Zimbabwe Red Cross Society provincial structures around the country are responding and continue monitoring the situation while strategising on response mechanisms together with officials from the Civil Protection Unit (CPU) and the Ministry of Health and Child Welfare.

Many households in areas like Mbire, Mukumbura, Muzarabani, Zvimba and other parts of Mashonaland East are in water with levels rising as rains continue pounding Zimbabwe. Other affected areas include Gokwe in Midlands where 19 houses have reportedly collapsed with many more in danger. In Manicaland, Chipinge district heavy storms continue to pound the catchment area of the great Save river and backflows into the tributaries are being realised. Flooding threat is increasing in the settlement areas. The Tongogara refugee camp which houses over 9000 refugees is more likely to be affected given its proximity to Save river bank.

In Masvingo, Chiredzi district, 32 houses in the Malipati area have been damaged with reports from other affected areas in the province streaming in. Meanwhile, the Meteorological department forecasts continued rains in most parts of the country at a time emergency response stocks are at the lowest.

Urgent needs for the victims include tents and tarpaulins for shelter, food, health and hygiene materials and blankets among other necessities. The Zimbabwe Red Cross Society is working on averting the challenges in affected areas and has called on local stakeholders like Corporates, churches and individuals to partner them in their efforts to alleviate human duffering.

The Zimbabwe Red Cross Society has responded to Flash Floods that have affected Zimta Park and Dreamhouse high-desnsity residential areas in Mutare Urban in Manicaland province.  The flooods which are a result of heavy downpours on the night of 17 December 2014 destroyed houses, household property, blankets and swept away food reserves and an assortment of other valuables.  One minor, a 6 year old girl died after being swept away while sleeping in one of the destroyed houses and her body was recovered 3 km down stream. Two other family members survived with injuries. Meanwhile some of the affected victims have been moved to the nearby Murahwa school but some of the affected victims are resisting to be moved in a move they say is aimed at guaranteeing safety for their houses and salvaged property.  

The affected area is not well-serviced and has poor drainage and as a result the only stream that flows past them couldn't contain the rains that were fed into it by other streams flowing from the high level Christmas Pass.  The stream then burst resulting in the overflow flooding into the residential areas at window level and leaving a wave of the destruction in the process. Some of the affectdd families have sought refugee with relatives in the nearby suburbs.  The Zimbabwe Red Cross Society volunteers have so far registered a total of 69 affected households with support from one official from IOM and 4 officers from the Department of Social Services.  A total of 38 blankets,  18 kitchen sets, 24 water buckets, 15 packs of Sanitary Pads and 100 tabs have been availed by Zimbabwe Red Cross Society with Mutare City council and the Minister of Provincial Affairs weighing in with food relief like mealie meal, cooking oil,  kapenta and dried vegetables.  The office of the local MP is also assisting another victim who lost records and drugs to access anti-retroviral drugs. Mutare City Council has also dispatched 2 bull-dozers to work on the affected area's drainage system.  Zimbabwe is currently receiving heavy rains with expectation for more as we move towards year end and into the new year and the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society is on high alert.  It is hoped that enough relief materials and aid will be received to aid the response work. The organisation has also recently responded to other cases of flooding, lightning and gas disasters in Masvingo and Matebeleland South provinces.

The Zimbabwe Red Cross Society has responded to Flash Floods that have affected Zimta Park and Dreamhouse high-desnsity residential areas in Mutare Urban in Manicaland province.  The flooods which are a result of heavy downpours on the night of 17 December 2014 destroyed houses, household property, blankets and swept away food reserves and an assortment of other valuables.  One minor, a 6 year old girl died after being swept away while sleeping in one of the destroyed houses and her body was recovered 3 km down stream. Two other family members survived with injuries. Meanwhile some of the affected victims have been moved to the nearby Murahwa school but some of the affected victims are resisting to be moved in a move they say is aimed at guaranteeing safety for their houses and salvaged property.  

The affected area is not well-serviced and has poor drainage and as a result the only stream that flows past them couldn't contain the rains that were fed into it by other streams flowing from the high level Christmas Pass.  The stream then burst resulting in the overflow flooding into the residential areas at window level and leaving a wave of the destruction in the process. Some of the affectdd families have sought refugee with relatives in the nearby suburbs.  The Zimbabwe Red Cross Society volunteers have so far registered a total of 69 affected households with support from one official from IOM and 4 officers from the Department of Social Services.  A total of 38 blankets,  18 kitchen sets, 24 water buckets, 15 packs of Sanitary Pads and 100 tabs have been availed by Zimbabwe Red Cross Society with Mutare City council and the Minister of Provincial Affairs weighing in with food relief like mealie meal, cooking oil,  kapenta and dried vegetables.  The office of the local MP is also assisting another victim who lost records and drugs to access anti-retroviral drugs. Mutare City Council has also dispatched 2 bull-dozers to work on the affected area's drainage system.  Zimbabwe is currently receiving heavy rains with expectation for more as we move towards year end and into the new year and the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society is on high alert.  It is hoped that enough relief materials and aid will be received to aid the response work. The organisation has also recently responded to other cases of flooding, lightning and gas disasters in Masvingo and Matebeleland South provinces.

The Zimbabwe Red Cross Society has partnered with the Nemaire Community in Makoni district of Rusape in Manicaland province to construct a clinic that will provide affordable and readily available health care to the local residents. The clinic which sholud be operational in 2015 is part of the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society's nationwide humanitarian programmes which have over the years helped provide a holistic approach to the diverse needs of most vulnerable groups. 

The Minsiter of Health and Child Welfare Honourable David Parirenyatwa commended the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society for its contributions to the local health sector. The Minister noted key interventions of the Red Cross chief among them the 2008 Cholera outbreaks and the 2014 floods response among many other ongoing projects. National President for the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society Edson Mlambo thanked the governement for availing the land for the project as well affording them humanitarian space. He pledged to continue responding to emerging humanitarian needs as a way of serving humanity. 

The Zimbabwe Red Cross Society (ZRCS) has embarked on community resilience projects aimed at empowering communities so that they are able to withstand shocks such as those caused by recent disasters in Masvingo and Manicaland provinces.

By Staff Reporter

ZRCS wants to empower communities so that they are able to withstand future shocks caused by disasters

ZRCS wants to empower communities so that they are able to withstand future shocks caused by disasters

The five-year project which is being funded by the British Red Cross is being implemented in Masvingo’s Mwenezi district and Chipinge in Manicaland.

ZRCS secretary-general Maxwell Phiri said the community resilience project concept was meant to give communities ammunition to stand on their own without external support when disasters struck.

“Red Cross has shifted its focus from the remedial kind of assistance to building community resilience with the aim of empowering communities so that they are able to withstand future shocks caused by disasters,” Phiri told The Standard Style.

“The concept of resilience has emerged as a longer-term more cost-effective strategy for substantially improving regional or local capacity to withstand such shocks and stresses. The International Federation of Red Cross Framework for Community Resilience defines it as ‘the ability of individuals, communities, organisations, or countries exposed to disaster, crises and underlying vulnerabilities to anticipate, prepare for, reduce the impact of, cope with and recover from the effects of shocks and stresses without compromising their long-term prospects’.”
Phiri said their focus in Mwenezi and Chipinge was to equip communities so that they were able to stand on their own without external support.

“We want to improve livelihoods and resilience of communities in Chipinge and Mwenezi districts focusing on areas such as food security and livelihoods, water, sanitation and hygiene as well as disaster risk reduction,” he said.
Phiri said at the end of the day, communities and households would be better able to anticipate, adapt and respond to disasters at household and community level.

ZRCS is working with 1 000 beneficiaries in wards 16, 20 and 24 in Chipinge and another 1 000 in Mwenezi’s wards 5, 8 and 14. The beneficiaries are expected to increase to 2 500 in each district after four and half years.

Phiri said ZRCS was working with the Local Government ministry and other stakeholders to empower communities.

“ZRCS is setting up centres of excellence in both districts to help educate farmers on issues like water harvesting technologies, improved and climate smart agriculture with also a focus on better animal management,” Phiri said.

“The programme also includes the rehabilitation of water points in both districts and construction of water troughs. For purposes of sustainability, water point committees are also being trained. The project also provides training to help with hygiene promotion in schools and homes.”

Phiri said care givers would be trained to provide nutrition education to pregnant and lactating mothers. The trained mothers would be provided with support to set up nutrition gardens.

Under disaster risk reduction activities, focus will be given to equipping communities to be knowledgeable about their hazards and risks.

“ZRCS volunteers would receive training in first aid as well as support with first aid kits so that they are better equipped to provide first aid services,” Phiri said.

The Zimbabwe Red Cross Society (ZRCS) has conferred Humanitarian Ambassador Status on celebrated local sungura music icon Alick Macheso. The status is in recognition of Macheso’s philanthropic activities over the years.

In his remarks, ZRCS National President Mr Edison Mlambo said Macheso’s appointment was in view of his contributions to the local humanitarian sector. “As a leading humanitarian and disaster relief organisation, we are touched by the work Macheso has been doing through holding the annual Benefit Concerts for Chitungwiza General Hospital, paying schools fees for orphans among other individual philanthropic activities. The Chitungwiza Hospital Annual Benefit concert has immensely contributed to the medical centre’s recent ISO certification.

Read more: Macheso confered Zim Red Cross Humanitarian Ambassador Status

1193By Takemore Mazuruse

ZRCS & IFRC officials together with beneficiaries look on while the ZRCS Secretary General Mrs Emma Kundishora pumps water from one of the rehabilitated boreholes in Mugobera Village, Marange in Manicaland Province

The Zimbabwe Red Cross Society's International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies(IFRC) supported Water and Sanitation and Food Security programmes have brought great relief to the vulnerable communities in Manicaland and Matebeleland South Province in the face of looming water borne diseases and hunger. Supported through funds from the Japanese government and the Hong Kong and Japanese Red Cross, the two initiatives have improved the disadvantaged's coping mechanisms g

Read more: Zimbabwe Red Cross Society in the community

ZIMBABWE RED CROSS SOCIETY

WORLD RED CROSS AND RED CRESCENT DAY SUPPLEMENT

Compiled by Takemore Mazuruse

World Red Cross Red Crescent message from the ZRCS Secretary General Mrs Emma Kundishora

Zimbabwe Red Cross Society is a dynamic voluntary organisation which continues to reinvent itself in tune with the diverse humanitarian challenges that stalk the vulnerable groups in our communities. The National Society joined the rest of the Movement family in commemorating World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day this past month of May. As a tried and tested humanitarian organisation, we take this opportunity to salute the selfless sacrifices that are being made by Red Cross Volunteers the world over in alleviating human suffering. Our volunteer efforts have been clearly evident during disaster and conflict times. The vulnerable and disadvantaged groups have continually benefited from the contributions of these magnanimous men and women.

Read more: 2011 World Red Cross Red Crescent Day Supplement