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On 12th January 2010 the earth in Haiti trembled. Due to the disaster, more than 200,000 people lost their lives, hundreds of thousands became homeless. One day after the disaster, a reconnaissance team of the Federal Agency for Technical Relief started its operations to support the German Embassy in Haiti. Altogether, the commitment of THW lasted for more than 18 months.
By now, THW has been active in West Africa for more than six weeks and has provided its logistical-technical contribution in the fight against the Ebola epidemic. Since the beginning of the operations, much has happened. Thus, for example, THW carried out numerous procurements in Ghana, set up several camps in Sierra Leone, performed technical maintenance work, developed a satellite communication system or supported the coordination of international aid. To date, altogether about 30 THW volunteers have been deployed.
Today the Federal Agency for Technical Relief is carrying out a relief goods transport to Sierra Leone. Besides THW equipment, goods for the German Red Cross are also transported.
Approximately six months after it was opened, about 15,000 Syrian civil war refugees live in Camp al Azraq in Jordan. The work of the Federal Agency for Technical Relief in the areas of water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) is making progress, whilst more and more people are arriving at the camp.
In mid-May, heavy and prolonged rain resulted in the most serious flooding in Serbia and Bosnia-Herzegovina for more than 100 years. During this period, altogether about 250 volunteers from THW supported the population in the flooded areas with the help of heavy-duty pumps and drinking water treatment units. The operations were completed on 23rd July.
At the weekend, heavy rainfall has resulted in flooded areas in the south of Denmark. The situation was particularly dramatic in the town of Tonder on the German-Danish border. Based on the framework of the border country concept, about 30 THW volunteers from the adjacent local sections supported the Danish authorities and organisations during the large-scale operation.
Only a few weeks ago, the refugee camp of al Azraq in the Jordan desert was deserted. Meanwhile, almost 10,000 Syrian have moved into their temporary accommodation – an end to this influx of refugees is not in sight. Every day, up to 600 new refugees arrive at the camp, who are supplied with drinking water by THW.
About seven weeks after the appearance of the devastating floods in Serbia and Bosnia-Herzegovina, THW is till supplying the population of the Serbian town of Obrenovac with drinking water. With their drinking water treatment units, volunteers of the Rapid Deployment Unit Water Supply Abroad (SEEWA) are currently producing about 35,000 litres of water a day. THW's operations will last until the end of July.
About three weeks after the onset of the devastating floods in the Balkans, THW has completed the pump works in Bosnia. In the course of the operations, twelve heavy-duty pumps transported about 2.1 billion litres of water in Bosnia and Serbia. This amount corresponds to roughly 560 Olympic swimming pools. In both countries, the drinking water treatment will be continued.
The flood disaster in the Balkan continues; the affected states still depend on international help. First, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Serbia asked the European partners for lifeboats, then, for high-performance pumps, which, among other suppliers, were provided by THW. Now it is drinking water that is urgently required.