Section 5: Key Actions within 6 Months of Disaster

Section 5: Key Actions within 6 Months of Disaster

This section describes the actions that should be taken as the disaster response moves from the immediate relief phase towards longer term recovery. It explains what the member/country programme should do around six months after the disaster, as well as the support that should be provided by other parts of the organisation. This section summarises the key information and actions that are required, and contains references to the annexes where relevant templates and detailed guidance on each activity can be found. This section follows on from Section 4, which explains what should be done in the first month following a disaster. The activities started in the first month will be continued up to six months, according to the Emergency Response and Resilience Building Plan, and may also continue beyond six months. This section sets out the specific activities that should be considered as the disaster response moves into a new phase. This section should be referred to when planning a disaster response, and also when a disaster-affected member/country programme is writing annual plans or country strategies.


Key Points

  • After six months, IHART co-ordinates and supports the planning process to integrate plans with the longer term change process based on the real time evaluation findings.

  • IHART and International Fundraising support member/country programme to develop a fundraising programme.

  • Manage the phase out in collaboration with the disaster-affected communities. Phase-out should not be treated as closure of activities, rather a change in leadership. The following aspects should be followed:

    • Building strong community institutions, particularly women’s leadership and women’s organisations that can carry forward work initiated by the Emergency Response and Resilience Programme.

    • Maintaining all staff details on file so that relevant skills can be redeployed in future, update of asset inventories.

    • Consultation of local/national labour laws and relevant employment legislation in case of termination of a large number of contracts.

    • Employment of extra security and protection measures to protect ActionAid assets.

    • Notice provided well in advance for all other contracts such as lease contract, bank accounts and vehicle contracts.

    • Submission of all project completion reports such as final report and audit reports well in advance of the programme phase-out/ handover. Archive key programme, audit and financial documents for at least the next five years.

    • All assets to be handed over to local organisations and/or authorities will be properly documented. The condition of the use of assets must be marked in the documentation. The MOU agreed with partners at the outset of the partnership should also clearly spell out how the organisations are going to handle ActionAid’s liabilities, legal obligation and pending legal issues.

  • Evaluation to consolidate learning from the programme.

  • Information sharing at a local, national and global level.


Summary of key actions

The following table summarises the key actions that should be taken around six months after the disaster. A fuller description of each activity is included on the following pages.

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Submit proposals to institutional donors, trusts and major donors

Who does this: member/country programme and fundraising affiliates, with support of International Fundraising and IHART

Depending on the scale of the emergency, continuing needs of those affected and the amount of funds we have been able to mobilise within the first six months, there may be a need for continued fundraising. At this stage, the most likely available sources of funding are institutional donors, trusts and major donors – the majority of which are accessed not directly by the disaster-affected country but through fundraising affiliates who ‘own’ the relationship with specific donors.

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Implementing disaster response

Integrate ERRP into longer term programmes and strategies

Who does this: member/country programme, with support from IHART

Disasters are not one-off events, and ActionAid’s disaster response should contribute to building community resilience to future disasters. To do this, it is important that the disaster response is integrated into the member/country programme’s ongoing work.

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Case Study

Kenya drought response programme

In 2011 ActionAid Kenya responded to a drought in the Horn of Africa, considered to be the worst to afflict the country in over 60 years. ActionAid Kenya responded to the drought by designing a comprehensive drought response programme that addressed the immediate needs linked to building long-term resilience amongst the communities to be better able to cope with future disasters.

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Case Study

Participatory vulnerability analysis (PVA) project in Italy – L’Aquila earthquake

Following the 2009 L’Aquila earthquake in Italy, which killed 308 people and displaced thousands for several months, there was much criticism about the government’s broken promises in the reconstruction process. In 2010 ActionAid Italy produced a documentary called ‘L’Aquila a pezzi’ (Broken L’Aquila) that called on the government to account for its actions, delays and lack of accountability. This documentary was widely distributed online on national newspapers and among independent media.

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