Twenty-seven IRC emergency aid specialists met for 10 days in Dubai for a training and strategy session, but on the sidelines of the conference, plans for a potential emergency intervention in Lebanon began to take shape.
The mission of the IRC team wherever it deploys is to meet the immediate survival needs and reduce the suffering of people tragically caught in the middle of conflict.
The team includes a senior leader, coordinators, logisticians, doctors and water and sanitation specialists. It also includes experts who focus on human rights protection, the special needs of traumatized children and vulnerable women, grant development and program design, security, finance, human resources and communications.
Ten of the team members are en route to Cyprus from Dubai this week and hope to leave for Lebanon as soon as possible to assess the humanitarian situation and look at how the International Rescue Committee can address urgent medical, shelter, water, sanitation and other needs. The rest of the team will be focusing on crises elsewhere in the world, but have been put on standby for the Lebanon response.
The International Rescue Committee conference in Dubai comes as the aid group prepares to open a logistics base in the city, which has become a major operations hub for the humanitarian aid community.
“The base in Dubai will further increase the IRC’s emergency capacity by allowing us to maintain essential stocks that can be deployed to the site of an emergency within 72 hours,” says Gillian Dunn, the director of the IRC’s Emergency Preparedness and Response Unit.
The supplies to be stored in Dubai will include tents, water supply equipment and essential medicines.
The International Rescue Committee, founded in 1933, provides emergency relief, rehabilitation, post-conflict development, human rights promotion, advocacy and resettlement services for refugees and others uprooted or affected by conflict and oppression. At work in 25 nations, the IRC is committed to restoring hope, dignity, freedom and self reliance.
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