The “Disaster Risk Reduction (DDR) in Armenia” project, the second phase of DIPECHO programme, officially ended on 30 October. A closing event was held by the implementing organisations: Save the Children, UNICEF, Oxfam and the Armenian Red Cross Society (ARCS), in collaboration with the Ministry of Emergency Situations, the Ministry of Education and Science, the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs, and the Disaster Risk Reduction National Platform.
Within the framework of the project, these organisations placed special emphasis on the inclusion of disaster risk reduction into the education process.
Save the Children specifically worked to increase children’s capacities, including children with disabilities and/or without appropriate care, as well as staff of special schools and care institutions, through DRR education. As a result of the project, the resilience of more than 2200 children and 930 staff of special schools and care institutions was improved through DRR education, capacity building, increasing preparedness of institutions to disaster risk reduction and advocacy for incorporation of needs of children with disabilities into the DRR National Strategy.
The Deputy Minister of Emergency Situations, Davit Karapetyan, underlined the importance of the participation of a wide range of organisations and ministries, which proved that DDR was a common matter for support and care.
The “DDR in Armenia” project was financed by the Disaster Preparedness Programme of the European Commission’s Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection Department (DIPECHO). DIPECHO funds projects in disaster-prone regions around the world; in Armenia projects have been undertaken in the regions of Shirak, Aragatsotn, Lori, Gegharkuniq, and Vayots Dzor, as well as Yerevan.
Irina Saghoyan, Save the Children Armenia Country Director said: “Children, especially children with disabilities and living in institutions, are a particularly vulnerable group when disasters occur. Paradoxically, these children and their teachers and caregivers are often excluded from disaster risk reduction activities. They are, therefore, less informed and less prepared to ensure their safety in times of disaster. Save the Children understands the needs of children and help children, teachers, parents and caregivers understand, mitigate and prepare for disasters”.
‘The EU has made a long-term commitment to DRR and to support third countries. The goal is to support sustainable development all around the world; for the most vulnerable people and for the most vulnerable countries,’ said Binh Adjemian, Head of Operations Section at the EU Delegation in Armenia.
Short film on the DRR project activities implemented by Save the Children: