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C12.5.1. Definition. Programs conducted to relieve or reduce the results of natural or manmade disasters or other endemic conditions such as human pain, disease, hunger, or privation that might present a serious threat to life or that can result in great damage to or loss of property.
C12.5.2. Authority. 10 USC 2561 states that “funds authorized to be appropriated to the DoD for a fiscal year for HA (i.e., Overseas Humanitarian, Disaster and Civic Aid (OHDACA)) shall be used for the purpose of providing transportation of humanitarian relief and for other humanitarian purposes worldwide.”
C12.5.3. Program Description. The HA Program is a security cooperation (SC) tool that can improve visibility, access and influence, as well as promote regional stability with foreign military and civilian counterparts. Such activities assure host nations (HNs) of U.S. Government commitment to ensure HA for populations in need. Direct outcomes of DoD HA projects include advancing the legitimacy of the host nation (HN) government by augmenting its capacity to provide essential services.
C188.8.131.52. Department of Defense (DoD) HA activities are divided across the four sectors for nomination in Overseas Humanitarian Assistance Shared Information System (OHASIS): education support, health support, disaster preparedness (DP), and basic infrastructure. As a function of OHASIS, projects are organized, aggregated, and analyzed within and across these sectors and their relevant sub-sets to enable project comparison across countries, regions, and Combatant Commands (CCMDs).
C184.108.40.206. HA Program Project Examples. All HA projects and activities must advance DoD goals and objectives and address humanitarian needs to qualify for OHDACA funding. HA program activities include but are not limited to construction, renovation, and repair of public buildings such as medical clinics, schools, disaster response facilities and warehouses; development and construction of rudimentary roads and bridges for humanitarian purposes; excavation for water wells and boreholes; repair and installation of water sanitation, waste treatment, or solid waste management systems; subject matter expert exchanges; disaster planning and preparedness activities; and the provision of DoD non-lethal EP.
C220.127.116.11.1. Education Support. Education support activities target vulnerable populations by establishing the foundation for continuous learning and development, and promoting an understanding of basic human rights. These activities empower the civilian populace as a whole by eliminating the dependence on others for information, thereby mitigating the influence of extremist group propaganda. Further, education activities foster the survival capabilities of the populace by providing the tools necessary for self-reliance in addressing issues with limited support and resources. School-based education support projects support equitable benefit, with consideration of cultural norms. Education support activities will be integrated into the national education agenda of the HN Ministry of Education (or relevant government institution), and involve the full participation of local stakeholders and other pertinent organizations (e.g. NGO/IOs and other USG Agencies). CCDM PMs will ensure site ownership, equal access, maintenance and sustainability guidelines are considered during project nomination. Project examples include:
C18.104.22.168.1.1. Construction or Rehabilitation of Schools and Orphanages. Construction, expansion, or improvement of primary and secondary education facilities and orphanages fall under the education support sector, as they are a specific and delineated type of basic infrastructure and construction.
C22.214.171.124.1.2. School Furniture and Supplies. Projects supplying school furniture and supplies, including donation, will reflect items that the recipient school has identified as needed, as well as the maintenance and sustainability requirements for these items.
C126.96.36.199.2. Health Support. Health-focused projects, such as disease mitigation and prevention initiatives, address the basic survival needs of the population and promote stability by enhancing the standard of care established by the HN. These activities expand the HN’s ability to maintain a level of healthcare conducive to a robust population, resulting in increased confidence in HN governance and potentially lowering the civilian population’s susceptibility to extremist influences. Health-related projects and activities should emphasize public health capacity building (e.g. improving HN disease surveillance systems, education, prevention, and training), without significantly exceeding the standards of care already provided by the HN. HA Program implementing units must avoid providing care or medications that exceed local standards because of the negative effects such care could have on the local community. The results of which could contribute to a decline in the HN public’s positive perception of the U.S. military or of the HN government and local infrastructure. All health focused projects, especially those emphasizing public health capacity building, must be closely coordinated with USAID. COCOM PMs will ensure partnering, coordination, site ownership, equal access, and maintenance and sustainability guidelines are considered during project nomination. Project examples include:
C188.8.131.52.2.1. Public Health Surveys and Assessments. These projects assess medical needs and requirements of indigenous populations in order to determine required programs to provide medical care to those in dire need.
C184.108.40.206.2.2. Medical Support and Supplies. Medical HA projects will focus on public health and broader capacity-building to address significant health risks in the HN population. Opportunities to stock public health facilities with EP medical supplies will be explored prior to expending funds to purchase new items. As a matter of lessons learned, medical supplies, specifically medications, will be approved only by exception in those situations that clearly identify a plan for immediate distribution, such as in disaster response. Medical equipment and consumables may be requested following the standard EP process; however, the DSCA warehouses will ensure the items are in good condition and proper working order and the country team must ensure the items can be sustained by the HN. Provision of medical equipment will be carefully evaluated in advance to ensure the equipment is provided to public facilities and can be properly maintained and operated by the local personnel.
C220.127.116.11.3. Disaster Preparedness (DP). DP projects build the capacity of the HN government to meet the humanitarian needs of the civilian population in an emergency response. DP is recognized as a fundamental HN requirement, and such projects provide an easily implemented tool for engaging bilaterally and multilaterally. DP projects offer a neutral forum, potentially involving stakeholders at all levels and across all segments of society, that can be used for establishing or strengthening inter/intra-regional relationships. Site ownership, partnering, maintenance and sustainability, and training guidelines must be addressed in DP project nominations. Projects that include construction components may also consider multi-use functionality for buildings in the project design-phase (e.g. emergency operations center (EOC) also serves as a community center). Project examples include:
C18.104.22.168.3.1. Construction/Repair of EOCs, Disaster Relief Warehouses. Construction, expansion, and improvement of DP facilities fall under the DP sector, as they are a specific and delineated type of basic infrastructure and construction.
C22.214.171.124.3.2. Disaster Preparedness Activities. These activities will enhance the HN’s ability to respond to and recover from disasters, and may include (but are not limited to) assistance with planning for disaster response and recovery; assistance with exercise design and development, conduct, and evaluation; and the training of emergency responders (e.g. command and control, logistics).
C126.96.36.199.4. Basic Infrastructure. Infrastructure projects will develop or enhance HN ability to provide those services essential for survival and meeting basic human needs (e.g. clean drinking water, sanitation) and longer term stability. Construction projects must meet relevant local, national, international standards, and/or building codes. Projects will be built in a way that accounts for HN maintenance and sustainability requirements. Project examples include:
C188.8.131.52.4.1. Construction and Repair of Rudimentary Surface Transportation Systems and Public Facilities. These types of projects are evaluated on a case-by-case basis with several principles in mind, such as cost, road length, type of construction, HA impact on benefitting population, and the vulnerability of that population to disasters. Promoting economic development is not an acceptable justification for an HA construction project.
C184.108.40.206.4.2. Water Supply, Sanitation and Distribution, and Well Drilling. These projects include drilling wells or rudimentary repairs of water supply, distribution and sanitation and sewage systems.
C220.127.116.11.4.3. Repair of Electrical Production and Distribution Systems. Repairs and improvements to these systems are authorized to the extent they may enhance a service providing for the basic needs of the population (e.g. repairing the electrical system at a primary school or medical clinic), but may not provide a capability that does not already exist and/or cannot be maintained by the local populace.
C12.5.4. Program Process. HA project managers work in coordination with SCOs, as well as other DoD HA component implementing units, to coordinate with other USG Agencies and when appropriate with NGO/IOs and the HN, to jointly identify the humanitarian needs of the civilian population and develop projects and activities that directly address those needs while furthering the goals and objectives of the DoD and HN government. Early and regular coordination with USAID can ensure that projects avoid unintended negative consequences and do not impede the effectiveness of USAID’s development activities.
C12.5.5. Reporting Requirements. DSCA will submit an annual report to Congress, providing information on the provision of HA pursuant to 10 USC 2561 for the prior fiscal year. The report is due at the time of the PB submission for the next fiscal year, which usually occurs on or before February 10. The report must include the total amount of funds obligated for humanitarian relief; the number of scheduled and completed HA transportation missions; and a description of any EP items made available for humanitarian assistance purposes under 10 USC 2557, to include the date of each transfer, the entity to whom the individual transfers were made, and the quantity of items transferred. The report is submitted to the Senate Committees on Armed Services and Foreign Relations and the House Committees on Armed Services and Foreign Affairs.
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