We arrived on 19th afternoon in Cox’s Bazar and from there we went to Balukhali camp. It took a long time as the road was full of people; all running for relief and I found there was no system of distribution and also those who are visiting might be they were also getting lost and then they tried to throwing these goods among the people.
I totally got lost on the one hand as I observed that local people are great and how they are trying hard to accept and solve the problem of the influx and on the other hand I found how some NGOs are trying to show their presence through banners and truck and car movements It was shame for me to see this. As an NGO worker, I felt shame.
This banner and visibility culture, so far I can guess, was being started by USAID and now all are in a competition. So here local NGOs are really vulnerable.
In this environment found WFP and ACF are running feeding center in Noyapara camp and Balukhali silently. Children are taking kichuri every day around 3500 persons are getting this food from ACF and WFP. There is no visibility competition.
Other things I felt very upset, none think about the transport for the service providers it is only for the International NGOs and UN bodies; but the local agencies who are shouldering the burdens need transport too. In 1991 I can remember Julian Francis provided one Landrover to SARPV at the time of cyclone to expedite emergency service to severely injured persons.
On emergency response we work on nutrition interventions for children under five years, Adolescent and pregnant and lactating women in Unchiprang settlement in Cox’s Bazar with the support of UNICEF.
Here we are providing supplementary food to under five children, screening SAM children, pregnant and lactating women. Our TCN, Monitoring officer, supervisor & volunteers work together for implementing this project in Hoaikhong, Unchiprang camp to ensure life-saving nutrition support.
In this Nutritional care or OTP ( Out Therapeutic Patient) we are screening the malnourished children and those who need immediate treatment are being referred to the Govt health center and who will be covered by the supplement food are being cared for by the feeding center. Every day around 2000 to 3000 mothers with children are taking their food. We already have one breastfeeding corner for lactating mothers. In future, we will extend this type of corner soon in several places in this camp.
Who needs service to get specially
• we found there are some children those who are mentally challenged and also some are autistice few is physically challenged person is there. These special group also need to be identified immediately so that they got also equal support and treatment.
• Those who are in most vulnerable position at this moment they are the orphan and guardian less children. Immediately need a screening to identify them and to protect and to take care of them.
Second vulnerable in position those who are widow and pregnant women they also need to be screened immediately for their safety and to get equal service is being provided for them Problem What we observed that is necessary immediately are sanitation, drinking water and cooking systems.
Need to do immediately Those who are on the top of the hill need to be transfered from there to the plain land. The elderlypeople and children andpregnant women should not reside at thetop of hills. On top of hills there is no system of water and even they can not come down for their relief goods and it is really an inhuman way to survive.
They dirty water nearby for their daily household work. Some Rohingya use their children for collecting relief goods. Many old women & pregnant women are living on top of the hill. They cannot get enough food, drinking water and other relief goods.
Most of them set their stove for cooking inside their tent. As a result, this has been creating an extremely hot environment inside the tent, which is very dangerous for Tent dwellers. It is not just harming for health, but by wind this oven’s fire could spread out to another tent, which can create bigger accidents. To prevent this type of unexpected accident this stove should be replaced by portable stoves, which are movable.
Immediately need to do the following for this huge influx in Bangladesh. Within one quarter of one upazila there are around 500,000 people from Myanmar. Whereas in Bangladesh approximate population per upazila is 4 to 5 hundred thousand. So it is easily understood what a pressure on people and nature.
So for the present, immediately, need to make these people safe by:
1. Sanitation and water supply
2. Medical Support
3. Counseling and therapeutic service
4. Screening children and disabled persons and pregnant women who need care
5. Move the old people and children from the top of the hills.
For the future, I felt that to provide service more systematically:
1. Shift these people in a particular zone from where everything is possible to mobilize easily
2. They should be engaged in some work to bring them out from the social trauma
3. Need to take some initiative so that they get back their self confidence
4. Before rainy season effective measure to save the children and pregnant women from cold
5. Before rainy season to arrange good shelter to save them from the landslide.
For Supervision and expedite this service for each service provider need one Transport in case for shifting and medical support so that they can use this transport
Md. Shahidul Haque
Chief Executive, SARPV