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Sometimes there are circumstances that make necessary to include additional distribute items in addition to be distributed along the main kits or alone. All the items This can be ordered and distributed separately (e.g., outside kit)done:

  • To meet an urgent need before the kits are available (e.g., blankets in a cold country).
  • To meet a specific need (e.g., mosquito nets during a malaria outbreak, soap during cholera outbreaks).
  • To meet the needs of vulnerable groups (disabled, elderly).
  • To complete a standard kit distribution.

Kitted and NFI items can be are often linked to the central emergency pre-positioning strategy utilised by aid agenciesBoth , and both kits and smaller unit NFIs can be developed in conjuncture with a procurement plan. Ideally, vendors will be able to pre-kit items before they arrive at an organisation's warehouse or distribution site. All , however all or part of the process can be completed before handprior to arrival, making the overall supply chain process easier.

If vendors are unwilling or unable to meet kitting requirements, then kitting will need to be conducted on the premise of the organisation or its partners. The act of an organisation conducting it's own kitting can be very time consuming and require attention to detail. Kitting will need to be formalised well in advance to distribution, but not so far in advance that items inside the kit may expire. Organisations should also account for their own storage capabilities - will they be able to safely store kits matching distribution needs? At what point are they storing too many kits?

Any kit or repackaged good must be transported and and packed in durable overpacking capable of withstanding not only the movement in a warehouse or transport to a distribution site, but also transport back to the home of the recipient and potentially even last for weeks or longer inside a beneficiary place of residence. Overpacking should be able to withstand rips and tears, and even be resistant to water damage. Solutions might include packing kits in:

  • Durable cardboard boxes.
  • Plastic or woven jute bags.
  • Inside of other durable distributed items. Example: items can be packed into standard "Oxfam" style buckets that are not only durable carrying cases, but also part of the kit itself.

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This guide does not intent to address targeting or the decisions about what to distribute to who and other key questions; there should be a dedicated technical teams specializing in food security, WASH, education, shelter or others, that could have a clear idea better input on these regardsneeds. Due However, due to the multiple activities needed to distribute commodities on time it is recommended to involve logistics personnel in the planning and decision making process, to . This will assure that what is decided could be feasible and that the decided plan makes sense alongside other logistics plans.  

Distribution should occur once clear evidence informs the distribution plan. Unfortunately sometimes is not possible to wait until full assessments are done, such as in the first phase of an emergency. In such these situations, distributions may start without good planning in order to save lives and/or alleviate the suffering , however it is strongly advised  that some form of verification will still be necessary to ensure that the beneficiaries identified have legitimate need.  A proper assessment will still need to be completed as soon as possible, but distributions can potentially start without assessments if planners gradually modify their content and systematisation to align with new evidence and contextual information.

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Some form of registration is necessary for all distributions, but the type of registration may vary from simply estimating the total number of beneficiaries, to collecting detailed information on each family and/or individual. The method of registration used is closely linked to the system of distribution adopted, and either communities themselves or external agencies can register the potential beneficiaries of a program. In most programs, the initial list of beneficiaries is produced with the assistance of community leaders or by government officials. Registration is a continuous exercise, requiring regular verification by checking registration data, and comparisons with other estimates of population numbers.                     

Distribution Plan

A distribution plan needs to consider beneficiaries' interests, security and logistical constraints, the form and frequency of anticipated distributions, the number of individuals who will receive distributions, and the resources available.

If safe, logistically possible, and appropriate for the population, distribution of all items at once or over the course of a single day minimises the cost and effort for the distributing agency. Single distributions are also a more convenient arrangement for beneficiaries who have to travel long distances to reach distribution sites.

In other contexts, a phased approach may be more appropriate, with distribution occurring over multiple days, or even different distributions separated by multiple days. Phased delivery might be due to:

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A distribution schedule must be designed carefully. It should include a clear schedule of working hours and set a realistic distribution target (in terms of the number of people served per day). The schedule should be shared with logistic logistics focal points for warehousing and transport to ensure that commodities can be prepared and delivered as planned.

A good way of planning the supply movement of a distribution is to roll back the time required for preparation based on an expected day of distribution.

How many days for preparation and delivering the supplies to the distribution site?What’s the transportation time between the main warehouse and the field location?How long does it take to source the item? Are they available in the market?

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  • How much responsibility is appropriate/efficient/worthy to give to the beneficiaries themselves?
  • What kind of resources (i.e., time, space, staff, financial resources) are available to set up and run the system?


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Another key aspect to take in consideration when deciding the approach and setting up a sound distribution system is the access.

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Sites should also be established in a way that minimises the number of people who are attending a distribution at any one point, as this can be a critical element of crowd control and in ensuring equitable access to humanitarian aid. One way of avoiding large crowds  is to call different communities on different days; , while another way is to create multiple distribution points to be managed simultaneously. An organisation’s decision in this regard on how to organize a distribution should be based on a variety of factors as detailed below:

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As a general rule, it is best to have the distribution points as close to the beneficiaries as possible. For dispersed populations, beneficiaries should not have to travel more than 5 kilometres at a time, however terrain, conditions and insecurity may require that distribution points are established less than 5km. If it is not possible to locate the centre within walking distance, arrangements should be made to transport refugees to and from the centre. In selecting distribution points, factors affecting vulnerable people’s physical access should be taken into consideration, e.g., such physical security of women who may be threatened, if they have beneficiaries need to pass through near a military/police camp; , the ability of disabled people to travel long distances, particularly the inability to travel in the dark. Local tensions between ethnic or religious groups should also be considered when identifying which groups will receive aid in which locations.

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Ideally, distribution points should be located far away from crowded areas such as markets or hospitals, in enclosed areas such as schoolyards that enable the distribution team to control entry and exit, and avoid over-crowding. In lieu of this, distribution Distribution teams can also create their own enclosed sites with stakes and rope or other local materials; , in these cases which aid agencies may have to invest in additional crowd-control staff to ensure order within the site. Distribution points should never be in the vicinity of military barracks or facilities, nor should they be in locations that force beneficiaries to travel to or through highly militarised areas.

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The size of a distribution team should be linked to the size of the distribution; generally. Generally, the larger the distribution, the larger the team. At a bare minimum, distribution teams should contain the following:

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The hand over of food or commodities is a highly sensitive moment, especially if it is not well managed. The staff must to be familiar with the general distribution organisation and understand his/her roll; , be able to answer questions or how to redirect them; , and be instructed to know what to do in case of running problems or major incidents. The staff working on the front line or dealing directly with beneficiaries must to receive specific training.

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Sufficient commodities for the distribution are ideally should be pre-positioned in the distribution enclosure the day before distribution. The pre-positioned quantities are based on prior calculations considering based on the number of beneficiaries to be served and the ration agreed upon. Up to 5% extra commodities should be pre-positioned to allow for damages and short-weight., mis counting or additional beneficiaries. 

Communicating with Beneficiaries and Host Communities

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The team leader must to ensure that everyone involved in the distribution knows their rollrole, what is expected from them, and have an enough knowledge about the exercise itself. A briefing to the core team is mandatory, and detailed briefings should be given to specific staff, such as those persons involved with crowd control, registration team, or complaint mechanism.

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