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Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) French: Le Bureau de la coordination des affaires humanitaires, is a United Nations body formed in December 1991 by General Assembly Resolution 46/ 182.[1] The resolution was designed to strengthen the UN’s response to complex emergencies and natural disasters by creating the Department of Humanitarian Affairs (DHA), and replacing the Office of the United Nations Disaster Relief Coordinator, which had been formed in 1972. The OCHA was therefore the result of a 1998 reorganisation of the DHA and was designed to be the UN focal point on major disasters. Its mandate was also expanded to include the coordination of humanitarian response, policy development and humanitarian advocacy. • ReliefWeb time-critical humanitarian information on Complex Emergencies and Natural Disasters (1996) • Central Emergency Response Fund (2006) • Humanitarian Information Centers, an emergency-specific, data exchange platform[3], supported by the Field Information Support Unit. On 15 May, the United Nations [OCHA] launched the Myanmar HIC website (http://myanmar.humanitarianinfo.org). The purpose the site is to improve information exchange and collaboration between operational agencies responding to Cyclone Nargis. Based in Bangkok, the HIC is providing support to the Humanitarian Partnership Team and other humanitarian partners in Yangon, as well as those based in Bangkok. • Humanitarian Reform, supporting cluster management, which was established in early 2006 based on the recommendation of Andrew MacLeod, a leading emergency specialist based in Pakistan. • Who does What Where Database and Contact Management Directory, To ensure that appropriate and timely humanitarian response is delivered during a disaster or emergency situation, information must be managed efficiently. The key information that are important to assess and ensure that humanitarian needs are met in any emergency/disaster are, to know which organizations(Who) are carrying out what activities (What) in which locations (Where) which is also universally referred to as the 3W (Who does What Where). The Who does What Where database (3W) is one product that is universally agreed to be the most important priority for any coordination activity. The integrated Contact Management Directory, complements the 3W database, making it easy for the user to navigate through the application.(2006) • Geonetwork A large database of map information using eponymous GeoNetwork opensource software.

Staff
OCHA is headed by the Undersecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, currently John Holmes. OCHA has some 1,064 staff[2], distributed across the world, with some support staff in New York City and Geneva. Major OCHA country offices are located in Afghanistan, Burundi, Central African Republic, Chad, Colombia, Guinea, Ivory Coast, the Palestinian territories, and Sudan (including a sub-office in Southern Sudan’s capital Juba). Regional offices are located in Panama City, Dakar, Nairobi, Johannesburg, Dubai, and Bangkok.

Services
OCHA has built up a range of services in the execution of its mandate. Some of the larger ones are: • IRIN, Integrated Regional Information Networks, a humanitarian news and analysis service[3] (1995) • INSARAG, International Search and Rescue Advisory Group

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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
humanitarian emergency assistance of the United Nations on 19 December 1991 [2] OCHA IN 2007: Activities and Extrabudgetary Requirements [3] ^ Redesigning ReliefWeb

Criticism
In addressing natural disasters like the Asian tsunami, the earthquakes in northern Pakistan and China, and the cyclone in Myanmar, OCHA is charged with coordinating United Nations agency response and to an extent that of associated bilateral and NGO donors. In the months immediately following such disasters this is a mammoth task, and the record has been mixed. OCHA has been criticized for parachuting in under-qualified staff to "coordinate" on-the- ground UN and other agency staff with considerably more experience.

See also
• Humanitarian aid

External links
• • • • • • • The OCHA official web site UN/OCHA Geonetwork ReliefWeb IRIN Field Information Services Unit Humanitarian Reform Who does What Where Database and Contact Management Directory

References
[1] United Nations General Assembly Resolution 182 session 46 Strengthening of the coordination of

Retrieved from fice_for_the_Coordination_of_Humanitarian_Affairs"

"http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Of-

Categories: United Nations specialized agencies, Humanitarian aid organizations, United Nations General Assembly subsidiary organs, United Nations stubs, Disaster stubs This page was last modified on 22 April 2009, at 04:04 (UTC). All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License. (See Copyrights for details.) Wikipedia® is a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., a U.S. registered 501(c)(3) taxdeductible nonprofit charity. Privacy policy About Wikipedia Disclaimers

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