Friday, August 22, 2008

CWA Initial Emergency Appeal: Georgia crisis

Appeal #6636

INITIAL appeal amount: $100,000


Bombing and hostilities earlier this month in the disputed Caucasus region of South Ossetia, Georgia, has led to tens of thousands of people fleeing, causing a humanitarian emergency.

North Ossetian authorities estimate that there are 35,000 displaced from Tshinvali in South Ossetia and its outskirts who have managed to get to North Ossetia; Russian officials say the number officially registered with them is about 22,000, Action by Churches Together International reports.

Some displaced people are also entering other southern regions of the Russian Federation including Rostov (Rostovskaya Oblast) and Kabardino-Balkhariya Republic, as well as Stavropolskiy and Krasnodarskiy Krays.

In Georgia, tens of thousands of civilians have been forced to leave their homes and seek shelter in various parts of Georgia. Some 80,000 displaced in and around the capital of Tbilisi are now residing in camps for the displaced as well as various state buildings, such as schools, kindergartens and hospitals. Tbilisi hospitals are providing emergency medical assistance to hundreds of wounded Georgian soldiers and civilians. Tens of thousands of people are left without homes, food, first necessity items and are in need of immediate help.


SUMMARY: CWS will support relief efforts of ACT members in the region, including the Russian Orthodox Church and International Orthodox Christian Charities. Our support will, in some instances, include the provision of material resources, including CWS Hygiene and Baby Kits and CWS Blankets.

Specifically: CWS is providing IOCC with one 40 ft. container of material resources, which will leave the United States next week. Items being provided include: CWS Blankets, CWS Hygiene and Baby Kits. Value of items being sent is approximately $200,000.

In addition, CWS will support the relief efforts of our local partners, Tblisi Youth House Foundation (TYHF) and Association Atinati.

It is anticipated that we will issue a revised appeal for longer-term efforts that may include support for other ACT members, once full assessments are completed.


ROC: The Russian Orthodox Church (ROC), a CWS partner and ACT member, is providing relief assistance to people displaced from South Ossetia and taking refuge in North Ossetia, Russian Federation. Church parishes and organizations in the region have started providing shelter to displaced people in church-owned premises and supplying foodstuffs, clothes and medicines to those in need.

CWS- and ACT-supported efforts include providing children*s relief packages for 335 children under 5; food ration kits to 510 displaced men and women; personal hygiene kits to 805 displaced men and women, including the provision of 295 kits for women; household kits (bedding and clothing) to 240 displaced men and women.

The food kits include: 2 kg. of flour; 1 kg. of sugar; 1 kg of buckwheat; 1 kg of rice; 2 kg of macaroni; 1 liter of vegetable oil; 2 pints of canned milk; and 1 pint of tea.

Tbilisi Youth House Foundation: The foundation, a CWS partner, is a Georgian non-governmental organization improving the lives of vulnerable persons through programs that promote education, physical and mental well-being, community development and emergency response throughout Georgia. The foundation is organizing a *SOS-Help to South-Ossetia War Victims in Georgia* project as an effort to assist Georgian internally displaced persons (IDPs) affected by the recent military conflict.

The project seeks to assist 500 Georgian IDPs who are currently staying at a Tbilisi public school building. Most of these displaced come from the villages located close to Tskhinvali area; these are villages which fell under the heavy bombardment by the Russian army during the first days of the military conflict; these villages were totally razed to the ground. The objective is to provide the displaced with basic living essentials; psychological assistance; and to provide 100 displaced children/youth with recreational activities. The items include: bed-clothing; electric cookers for each family; kitchen and bathware; detergents/cleansers; mattresses/blankets and pillows.

Association Atinati intends to provide basic essentials (bedding, kitchen kits) to 25-30 families.

Provisonal budget information:

Russian Orthodox Church: $59,994, includes $47,604 in direct assistance (food and non-food items);

Tbilisi Youth House Foundation: $27,000, includes $16,000 in direct assistance, and $6,595 in costs of personnel that includes social workers and psychologists.

Association Atinati efforts in providing non-food items: $7,000.

HOW TO HELP: Contributions to support this emergency appeal may be sent to your denomination or to Church World Service, P.O. Box 968, Elkhart, IN, 46515. Please designate: Appeal # 6636, Georgia Crisis. For further information about disasters to which Church World Service is responding please visit or call the CWS Hotline, (800) 297-1516.

CWS Emergency Response Program special contacts: (212) 870-3151

Program Director:

Domestic Response:



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