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Azerbaijan, Ismayilli 10.07.2014


“Building Safe and Resilient Communities” project will conciliate 6 rural and 2 urban communities with knowledge and skills on anticipating, responding to and recovering from disasters.

The aim of project is to strengthen resilience of targeted vulnerable rural and urban communities from Ismayilli and Zagatala districts Azerbaijan to natural and manmade disasters and to establish robust and strong communities.  

After finalization of the vulnerability capacity assessment (VCA) a “Community based disaster action plan” will be developed within the frame of this project and hence be implemented in those communities. The data will be shared with relevant governmental, non-governmental and international organisations as well as with other National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

The project will create favourable conditions for coordination for all bodies engaged in disaster response and disaster risk reduction and integrate Azerbaijan Red Crescent Society staff and volunteers in local rural and urban civil protection structures.

Since 2012 the Azerbaijan Red Crescent Society (AzRCS) with a support from the Austrian Development Cooperation and the Austrian Red Cross has been implementing the “Building Safe and Resilient Communities” project. The first and second year of the 3 years project cover Ismayilli district and the third year covers Zagatala district. The purpose of the project and reason why Ismayilli and Zagatala were chosen is that these areas frequently prone to disasters like earthquakes and landslides.

Within the framework of the project, on the 5th May 2014, the AzRCS in cooperation with Ismayilli district authority organized a public event in view of the World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day (8th May). This public event in Ismayilli consisted of two parts. First, around 100 school-children wearing special uniforms and holding visual aids on the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement in their hands marched all over the central street of Ismayilli district. The second part of the event started first in “Children Creative Work Centre” and then continued in Ismayilli Youth Center, where a short-length film about the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement was demonstrated. This occasion was also used to raise public awareness on urban disaster risks, as during the event young CBDRR volunteers of Ismayilli district performed scenes on Disaster Preparedness and First Aid activities. The participants of the event also enjoyed songs performed by a musical ensemble from “Children Creative Work Center”. The event demonstrated how far volunteers and community members have acquired so far given knowledge in given topics, such as DRR, First Aid, Search and Rescue.

In the past, the practical use of knowledge and skills by the DRR volunteers and community members has been demonstrated during several situations. For example there were recently couple of times minor earthquakes in Ismayilli, and due to awareness raising activities of the CBDRR teams, people knew what to do in that situation. Awareness raising activities include apart from public events also trainings on DRR and Family Emergency Planning in schools of Ismayilli district as well as the distribution of brochures on “What to do before, during and after disasters”. During that public event in Ismayilli, community members themselves suggested to AzRCS to organize small scale simulation exercises to apply received knowledge. Such simulation exercise is planned for the second half of September this year.

On 27th June 2014, a First Aid training was conducted in Ismayilli district. During the training first aid skills (artificial breathing, indirect heart massage, drowning, wounds, bleedings and fractures) were demonstrated to the local population and relevant information about first aid skills were given. During the training special visual aids were also used. First Aid booklets were distributed to participants of the training. About 50 people participated in the training. This training attracted the interest of the local population and local authorities because the training had demonstrations and the local population had the opportunity to participate in them, and could ask questions and share practical stories. Participants at this training could enhance awareness on disaster risks and at the same time acquire practical responding skills in First Aid.