The French Government has contributed to the Ambae humanitarian Response plan, by funding and delivering three tons of Non-Food Items (NFI) to the Vanuatu Red Cross Society (VRCS) through the French Red Cross operating in Vanuatu, and the logistic means of the Army Forces in New Caledonia.
This contribution has been implemented within the FRANZ (France, Australia, and New-Zealand) framework agreements, which aim to support Vanuatu government to manage natural disaster aftermaths.
Last month, the Vanuatu Government through National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) has sent a request for assistance to the FRANZ unites and the VRCS, as a leading humanitarian actor in Vanuatu, and which is also working closely with its partners such as French Red Cross.
The French Red Cross has been in Vanuatu since 2006, with around 20 projects implemented so far in the fields of WASH and Disaster Management, including emergency responses to 2015 TC PAM and Ambae Volcano eruption in October 2017.
On Saturday 12 May 2018, a CASA plane from the French Air Force landed at the Port Vila International Airport with international supply from French Red Cross warehouse in New Caledonia, funded by the French Government as participation to Ambae disaster response, amounting Vt10 million.
The French Government contribution is to address the needs for 150 displaced families or around 750 people through the provision of Non-food items and emergency shelter assistance. In addition, up to 100 hosting families may be supported as well to facilitate the integration of the evacuees to their resettlements sites.
The supply from the French government was coordinated by the French Red Cross Delegation in Port Vila, led by the Country Director, David Boisson, in conjunction with VRCS and the French Embassy in Vanuatu.
The international supply is comprised of 150 family kits that include a kitchen set, shelter set, sleeping mat and tarpaulins.
In addition, the French Government is also looking at locally purchasing 1000 other NFI (blankets, jerry cans…) to be distributed by Vanuatu Red Cross Society to 150 displaced households and up to 100 host families, according to further assessment on relocation sites.
“At this point in time, VRCS has not yet decided on the dispatch of this relief supply, until we receive a final decision and relocation plan from the government about the Ambae situation, then from there VRCS can proceed with its response plan. But in the meantime, we already sent a vehicle to Ambae to help our Red Cross Volunteers doing the ground work. Transportation is one of our big challenge in our islands," said the CEO of Vanuatu Red Cross, Jacqueline De Gaillande.
All items are stored at the VRCS warehouse in Port Vila.