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United Nations System in Bhutan
5,000 UNFPA dignity kits for victims

The department of disaster management received 2,050 dignity kits from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) for the people affected by the tremors of September 18, 2011.

More than three months after the tremors, the "emergency relief" was handed over to the home minister Minjur Dorji by UNFPA goodwill ambassador, Queen Mother Ashi Sangay Choden Wangchuck.
UNFPA's assistant resident representative, Yeshey Dorji, said the government had requested 1,000 kits when the tremors struck.UNFPA however gave 4,000 more kits, of which 3,950 which are now kept with RENEW to be used for emergencies.

"We gave more kits than requested because its requirement might have increased, following the assessment of disaster over time," he said.

The 5,000 kits are worth Nu 5.3M.There are different kits for men, women, babies and nuns.

Dignity kits for men contain a gho; an innerwear, soap, towel and a condom; while the kits for women contain a kira, soap, a packet of sanitary napkins and femidom (female condom).

Yeshey Dorji said this time the kits are also designed for babies and nuns separately. "Each baby kit contains six pieces of cotton cloth diapers and a blanket," he said. "While a nun kit has a robe, a soap, a towel, an innerwear and a packet of sanitary napkin."

"Emergency relief" was handed over to the home minister Minjur Dorji by UNFPA goodwill ambassador, Queen Mother Ashi Sangay Choden Wangchuck
Officials said, according to the report submitted to them, a total of 5,550 people were affected on September 18.There were 550 nuns; 500 babies; 2,000 men and 2,500 women.

The 2,050 kits received are for 500 men, 500 females, 500 babies and 550 nuns.

"These kits will be distributed to the people of four worst affected dzongkhags," disaster management department director general Namgay Wangchuk said.

On why the "emergency relief" came three months later, Namgay Wangchuk explained they first assessed the homes damaged, and then distributed CGI sheets and tents. "After the initial assessment, we learnt the number of people, who needed these kits."

The UN system has given Bhutan a disaster relief fund of about USD 1.7M for the September 18 tremor.

Contributed by Yangchen C Rinzin, KUENSEL, Bhutan's National Newspapawer, January 2012

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