Emergency Shelter Haiti Field Notes April 2011

The IASC Shelter Cluster prioritised a review of the shelter needs of families in emergency shelter. A large number are expected to remain in emergency shelter during 2011 or longer. The majority have managed to construct good shelters using salvage materials, distributed materials and a range of support, but accommodation conditions, performance and durability should be monitored, especially in the case of the most vulnerable. Recent programmes by CARE and the British Red Cross to reinforce shelters have been successful in optimising the existing self made shelters with relatively small material support. This provides a model for future programming. Additional notes on specifications, programme evaluations and other information are available separately from the Shelter Cluster. The risks of institutionalising camps, and the risks of consuming scarce resources in emergency measures at the expense of more durable permanent solutions must be considered in the planning of any emergency shelter support. Support should be strategic and targeted. Families should be afforded choice in and responsibility for their shelter solutions. The Shelter Cluster Technical Advisor carried out a series of field visits, meetings with partners and technical working group meetings during April 2011 to arrive at the following outline observations on emergency shelter issues.