Internews and the BBC World Service Trust are partners in a DfID funded consortium focusing on improving how aid agencies communicate with disaster affected communities. The emphasis is on the need to deliver information, as aid itself, through the most appropriate channels ...more
infoasaid is a collaborative project of two CDAC (Communicating with Disaster Affected Communities) Network members. The CDAC Network is a cross-sector collaboration between international media organisations, NGOs, the Red Cross movement and UN agencies. Participating organisations are committed to mainstreaming the capacity for beneficiary communications into humanitarian policy and practice. The current Steering Committee consists of: ALNAP; BBCWST; British Red Cross; HAP International; International Media Support (IMS); infoasaid; Internews; Irish Red Cross; Merlin; OCHA; Plan UK; Save the Children; Thomson Reuters Foundation; UNFPA.
TwitterFollow @infoasaidmoreDecember 02, 2011
The infoasaid project, a DfID funded consortium of Internews and BBC World Service Trust, is producing a series of tools, including country-specific media and telecommunications guides, to help humanitarian agencies communicate effectively with crisis-affected communities. Each country guide identifies local media organizations, telecommunication companies and other media service providers that can help to produce and disseminate radio shows, TV programs, SMS messages, poster campaigns or public service announcements to communicate with local communities in a timely, accurate and well-targeted manner.November 25, 2011
SDRs provide first responders and humanitarians on the ground with clear, detailed and up-to-date analysis of background information about the affected area, groups of interest, risks and vulnerabilities, as well as sectorial information at the local. SDRs for emergencies are based on review of secondary data, field studies on-going during the emergency, contact with individuals working in the field, and use of lessons learned and experience from past similar crises or disasters.November 17, 2011
New report published by infoasaid captures practical case studies and best practice in communications with affected communities during the 2010 responses in Haiti.
The 7.0 magnitude earthquake that struck the south of Haiti on January 12th 2010 triggered the largest humanitarian response since the Indian Ocean Tsunami of 2004. But the earthquake was unfortunately not the only serious emergency to strike Haiti in 2010. The outbreak of cholera in the town of St Marc on October 18th 2010 brought a new, highly infectious and deadly disease to a country with weak sanitation and health systems, and no knowledge of this illness.
Throughout these responses, a number of organisations tried to operationalise ways to fill a long-acknowledged gap in humanitarian response: the way in which aid agencies share information with and listen to those affected by the disaster. At the same time, a whole range of other actors – Haitian media, local private sector actors including technology companies, telecoms companies and Haitians in the overseas diaspora also started working to share information and to improve communication. Of particular note was the Haitian use of mobile phone and web based technology (more Haitians own mobile phones than own radios), and the experimental efforts by aid agencies to understand and engage with this new dynamic.November 15, 2011
Pastoralists check stock prices on their mobiles
Sellina Narumbe is a pastoralist from Isiolo, northern Kenya. Reliant on her livestock for her survival, she has been hit hard by the ongoing drought sweeping parts of the country. Lack of pasture has killed forty of her fifty goats, and left her with only seven cows from her original stock of twenty.
In collaboration with the World Food Programme, ActionAid has been providing vital monthly food rations to over 80,000 people in Isiolo. Distribution of the supplies is handled by community members themselves through self-organised “Relief Committees”. Sellina acts as Secretary of her local Relief Committee, overseeing distributions in five villages.
She’s also recently joined a project being rolled out by ActionAid and infoasaid, a consortium of the BBC World Service Trust and media development agency Internews. The project aims to help combat food insecurity amongst communities affected by the drought, using innovative technology – Frontline SMS and Freedom Fone – to transmit information simultaneously to multiple recipients from a laptop computer. November 02, 2011
Infoasaid launches media and telecoms landscape guide to Ethiopia
Ethiopia has repeatedly been the scene of large-scale humanitarian emergencies,
Infoasaid has now published a comprehensive guide to the country’s media and telecoms landscape.
This aims to help aid agencies establish two-way communication with the country’s disaster-affected communities, no matter how remote they may be..
The challenges are daunting.
Vast areas of Ethiopia have poor or non-existent radio coverage.
A large segment of the rural population still relies exclusively on word of mouth to know what is happening in the outside world.
The mobile telephone network is also very patchy in its coverage. Ethiopia has a significantly lower rate of mobile phone ownership than most of its East African neighbours.
And the government exercises tight control overl news and information.
To get the full picture, click here
Assessing the mobile environment: Factors affecting the suitability of SMS and mobile for communicating with disaster-affected communities
To improve communications with disaster affected communities, infoasaid has partnered with Frontline SMS. Frontline SMS is a mobile phone open source solution, created to overcome communication barriers faced by NGO’s. Frontline SMS leverages basic tools — computers and mobile phones — to enable instantaneous two-way communication on a large scale.In determining whether, and how to use mobile technology, in particular SMS, in emergency response context matters. Factors such as the state of the national mobile market, customs around the use and control of mobile phones, and the current condition of the network are all important considerations. Frontline SMS in collaboration with infoasaid have developed a checklist which seeks to set factors to be aware of in assessing the mobile context. They are not weighted or prioritised, but rather present an overall picture which should inform decision-making.Frontline SMS Checklist
September 12, 2011
infoasaid publishes Nepal media landscape guide
Nepal is settling down after several years of social upheaval and radical political change.
But it remains one of the poorest countries in Asia, at constant risk of major natural disasters. These range from devastating earthquakes to droughts and floods.
However, Nepal's private media is flourishing in a new era of democracy and press freedom.
More than 300 FM radio stations – most of which are linked by content sharing networks - offer aid agencies new ways of keeping in touch with local communities.
And more than third of all Nepalese own a mobile phone.
Find out how aid agencies can establish effective two-way communication with Nepal’s most isolated and vulnerable communities by consulting infoasaid’s new Nepal Media and Telecoms Landscape Guide.August 22, 2011
Cote d’Ivoire Media Landscape Guide updated following end of civil war
The media scene has changed considerably following the accession to power of President Alassane Ouattara in April 2011.
The country, which had been split into separate government and rebel controlled areas for more than eight years, is once more reunited under a single administration.
But the final stages of Cote d’Ivoire’s long-running conflict triggered a new humanitarian emergency. More than half a million Ivorians fled from their homes to escape conflict during the first quarter of this year and most are still afraid to return.
Click here to read the August 2011 revision to infoasaid’s Media and Telecommunications Guide to Cote d’Ivoire. It can help you to reach them.July 29, 2011
Targeted, reliable information can help save lives in crisis-affected communities. As famine is declared in neighbouring Somalia, we’re helping ActionAid to improve vital communication with drought-affected populations in northern Kenya.
Open source mobile solutions such as Frontline SMS and Freedom Fone are enabling two-way communication with vulnerable communities.July 15, 2011
In any emergency, be it natural disaster or man-made, people's lives are turned upside down. Knowing what's happening, where to go for assistance and who to call for help is crucial to their survival and recovery. The goal of the 'infoasaid' project is to help humanitarian organisations integrate two way communication into their emergency programmes. This in turn will improve the quality and coverage of humanitarian response. The 'Communication is Aid' animation is designed to demonstrate the positive impact of two way communication with crisis affected populations.