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close this bookEmergency Management (United Nations Children's Fund, 390 p.)
close this folderWorkshop Session
View the documentSession 0: Opening Session
View the documentSession 1: Course Introduction*
View the documentSession 2: Perceptions of Emergencies
View the documentSession 3: Simulation*
View the documentSession 4: Principles of Emergency Management
View the documentSession 5: Early Warning & Pre-Disaster Planning
View the documentSession 6: Assessment
View the documentSession 7: Programme Planning
View the documentSession 8: Water & Sanitation
View the documentSession 9: Health
View the documentSession 10: Food and Nutrition
View the documentSession 11: Media Relations
View the documentSession 12: Supply and Logistics
View the documentSession 13: Children in Especially Difficult Circumstances
View the documentSession 14: International Relief System
View the documentSession 15: Funding
View the documentSession 16: Key Operating Procedures
View the documentSession 17: Applications of Emergency Manual and Handbook
View the documentSession 18: Training of Trainers

Session 2: Perceptions of Emergencies

Learning Objectives

- Distinguish the forms of emergencies and their characteristics

- Describe UNICEF's overall role and the range of interventions in each emergency type vis-is governments and other agencies

- Understand how UNICEF can translate emergencies into opportunity for development

- Interpret UNICEF's emergency role as assisting in and supporting governments rather than managing emergency programmes

- Recognize the importance of programme strategy decisions in allocating scarce resources

Learning Points

1. Forms of emergencies, including:

- types
- frequency
- characteristics
- scale of impact

(For details, refer to UNICEF Field Manual, Book E, Section 1.1 and Book E, Reference Note R1.)

2. Effects of disasters (for details refer to Book E, Section 1.1, and Assisting in Emergencies).

3. UNICEF's role in emergencies (for details, refer to Book E, Section 1.2 and Assisting in Emergencies).

4. Linking emergency operations with development (for details refer to "Disasters and Development" by F. Cuny, Oxford University Press, 1984).

Learning Methods

The session opens with the resource person asking participants to "name" types of emergency situations which UNICEF may be called upon to assist. These should be listed on a flip chart. After grouping the emergencies by type (see Book E, Section 1.1), smaller working groups can be asked to each analyze one type of emergency based on Discussion Points 1 and 2. (In addition to Book E and Assisting in Emergencies), groups can be given copies of the relevant "profiles" included with this session.

The groups should report back on their findings, taking no more than five minutes per group.

UNICEF's overall role in emergencies is then presented by the Resource Person, being sure to underline the importance of linking emergency operations with longer-term development. This can be done with a mix of "presentation", based on the written references noted in the "Learning Points" and participant contributions, based on experience and questions.

Discussion Points

1. Describe the form of emergency "assigned" to your group by noting:

- the type of emergency
- its relative frequency
- a physical description of the emergency
- its potential scale of impact

2. What are the potential effects of the "assigned" emergency?

- Who will be affected?
- How will they be affected?

Required Reading

- UNICEF, "Assisting in Emergencies", Chapter 7.
- UNICEF, Field Manual Book E, Section 1.2.

Supplementary Reading

- Frederick Cuny, Disasters and Development.

Speaker's Preparation Aids

- Kunio Waki, "Perceptions of Emergencies in UNICEF", Notes from Presentation at Bangkok Workshop, June 1987

- The Disaster Spectrum


Speaker’s Aid (1)

TITLE: Perception of Emergency
AUTHOR: Kunio Waki


UNICEF Emergency Management Workshop
Monday, 1 June 1987

Perception of Emergency
Presentation by Kunio Waki


UNICEF Involvement in Emergencies


I. Preparedness

"early warning"

II. Emergency
III. Rehabilitation
IV. Development

Types of Emergency and UNICEF Involvement in Asia

I. Localized Small Emergencies

- Earthquakes
- Volcanic eruption in Indonesia

Government and local NGOs
Only occasionally involved
Quick response required

II. Natural disasters which affect a significant size of the child population

The Government and local NGOs are capable of providing relief and rehabilitation services with some international assistance


- Typhoons in Viet-Nam, the Philippines, the South Pacific

- Large-scale earthquake in China

- Medium-scale flood drought in Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, Thailand, etc.

· Mobilization of UNICEF Executive Director's Emergency Fund/Reserve

· Limited response

· The Government plays a major role while UNICEF inputs are largely supplies and equipment for rehabilitation

III. Large-scale natural disasters which affect a large population

The government is not capable of providing rehabilitation services for the whole affected population.


Cyclone/Flood in Bangladesh Flood/Drought in India

(Special Chile Relief minion children and mothers)

· UNICEF provides leadership in program formulation and implementation
· Special fund-raising (noted project)
· Operational involvement from center to the grass-roots
· Close working relation with the Government at all levels, WHO, WFP, others
· Large number of UNICEF staff involved

IV. Large-scale Man-made Emergencies

- Kampuchea

Boarder operations
Inside Kampuchea

- Bangladesh refugees/evacuees

8-9 million people

· UNICEF plays a lead agency role.
· Massive operational involvement with special funding

(Note: Biafra, Lebanon.....)

V. Limited Man-made Emergencies

- Muslim evacuees from Burma in Bangladesh
- Negroes Occidental
· Limited UNICEF involvement in cooperation with the Government agencies

VI. Small-scale Localized Man-made Emergencies

- Armed conflicts in the Philippines and Sri Lanka
· UNICEF rarely involved

UNICEF Mandate

· Special attention to the vulnerable groups

- Small children
- pregnant and lactating mothers
(Child Survival)

· Non-political/humanitarian image of the organization

- involvement in politically sensitive operations
- egalitarian approach without discrimination

· UNICEF as a development agency (not as an emergency relief agency... UNDRO, UNHCR, WFP, ICRC...)

· Accountability: capacity to monitor implementation to prevent loss/waste and corruption

· Security of UNICEF staff

UNICEF's Strength

I. Operational Capability

1. Field offices and staff

- quick response
- mobilization of local resources

2. Logistics

supply operations... UNIPAC

...Local Procurement

3. Communications Networks

II. Professional Competence

- Public health
- Nutrition/food technology
- Water supply and sanitation
- Transport maintenance

III. Capacity for Funding

- Media contacts throughout the world
- Information staff
- National Committees

Some Lesson from UNICEF experiences

1. Importance of team work

- Program staff
- Supply/Logistics staff
- Experts in health (WHO) nutrition

2. Importance of capacity to play quickly

- Lead time needed
- Establishment of assumptions/scenarios
- Knowledge/experiences in various areas

3. Political Analysis

- Negotiation with the authorities
- To protect UNICEF'S image

4. Difficulties in dealing with human factors

- Emotional reactions
- ego
- ambitions

5. Lack of institutional memory and staff capacity

- Report the same mistakes
- Need for training
- Career development staff's exposure to emergency operations

6. Importance of mobilizing existing UNICEF staff

7. Strategic thinking needed in programming

- Cost/benefit
- Return on investment
- Limited resources

8. Quick decision-making out

9. Difficulties in phasing out

10. Active participation of local community leaders, volunteers extension workers


Speaker’s Aid (2)

TITLE: Disaster Spectrum
AUTHOR: Disaster Management Center/Everett Ressler




General Considerations

- Disaster research
- Human behavior in emergencies
- Organizational behavior in emergencies
- National disaster systems
- Disaster legislation
- International disaster system
- Humanitarian law
- Economic impact of disasters
- General management principles
- Budgeting and accounting
- Role of the media in disasters

Prediction and Hazard/risk

- Disaster history
- Prediction techniques for natural disasters
- Vulnerability analysis techniques
- Risk mapping techniques
- Analysis of information sources for assessing vulnerability
- Environmental monitoring
- Scientist analysis (meteorological, hydrological, agriculture, epidemiologies)
- Community experience

Mitigation measures

- Land use planning/regulation
- Building codes/standards
- Crop cycle adjustment
- Mitigation-related building technologies
- Life-line engineering
- Securing essential structures
- Protective emergency structures (shelters, mounds, etc.)

Preparedness measures

- Develop of emergencies organizations
- Disaster plans
- Disaster planning at the local level
- Disaster planning at the national level
- Disaster planning at the international level
- Warning systems
- Public awareness/education
- Safety measures for life and personal property
- Procedures for emergency services
- Training of emergency services staff
- Evacuation planning
- Disaster training
- Insurance
- Logistics and supply
- Stockpiling/procurement
- Resources inventory
- Communication planning

Emergency response

- Damage assessment
- Logistics
- Need assessment
- Evacuating
- Search and rescue
- Communications


Day _______________
Session ____________

1. In your view, what were the key points learned in this session?

2. Comment on the application of these within UNICEF and your situation.

3. Suggest any additional critical points that should have been covered.

4. Do you have comments on the suggested reading?

Suggest any additional information sources for sessions of the day.
Case Studies:

5. Comment on the learning methodology (lectures, group work, films) used in the session.