September Roundup

We are pleased to bring you the latest CDAC Network Roundup with news of exciting developments and activites from Network members, partners and the secretariat.

1. Update from CDAC Haiti

CDAC Haiti recently collaborated with IOM and ACTED on an important project which led to the production of a report about the intentions of IDPs living in camps in Haiti. "The intention survey debunks the notion that people are living in the camps out of choice” (Luca Dall’Oglio, IOM Chief of Mission, Haiti). IDPs want to leave the camps but have no-where to go. The original press release on the survey can be found here which includes links to the full IDPs Intentions Survey (in French) and focal contacts for ACTED, CDAC Haiti and IOM Haiti. OCHA have also featured the work in their humanitarian bulletin which can be found here. You can also find an article in Spain’s most popular digital newspaper Elmundo (click on the image and open in Google Chrome for an English version).

2. CDAC Haiti – Learning Review

The CDAC Haiti Learning Review is about to commence. The primary focus of the review is on processes essential for managing a communications coordination mechanism at country level. The review will therefore assess some of CDAC Haiti’s specific coordination activities. It will combine desk-based enquiry and in-country research to extract lessons toward informing future communications coordination initiatives in the humanitarian sector. The review will be complete by the end of October 2011 and learning will be shared widely with humanitarian colleagues.

3. CDAC Network Social Media

The CDAC Network now has Twitter and YouTube accounts. You can follow, subscribe and support us using the links below. Development of the CDAC Network’s website is well underway and will go live in October. It will provide a much anticipated source of information on communicating with disaster affected communities as well as acting as a collaboration and knowledge exchange platform for all CDAC Network related issues. In the meantime follow us Twitter and YouTube. Full details of the website as well as a Facebook page will be coming soon…

4. Review and Strategic Planning Process Underway

The CDAC Network’s Review and Strategic Planning Process is now underway. It is being led by a team of independent consultants who are working in collaboration with the Network’s core team (Rachel Houghton, Coordinator; Craig Tucker, Information Officer) and Steering Committee members to identify the Network’s strategic objectives for 2012-2014. The review will also clarify the Network’s governance, membership and management structure and advise on longer term sustainability of the initiative. This is a critical juncture in the development of the CDAC Network and an exciting time for those committed to improving communications with disaster affected populations. As the process unfolds, the CDAC Network remains active through its Capacity Strengthening Programme detailed below.

5. Capacity Strengthening Programme

This programme of work is funded by infoasaid through its DfID grant. Recent conversations with Steering Committee members and friends of the CDAC Network have helped to define a programme of capacity building activities that are also intended to benefit the wider humanitarian sector. The activities which the CDAC Network is currently working on include:

  • A media and technology event (February 2012 and hosted by Attendance at this event will be by invitation only, but the event will be streamed with the opportunity for virtual Q & A sessions throughout the event for those who are not present
  • A simulation that will focus on collaboration and coordination between humanitarian, media and technology agencies
  • A bespoke partnership training (for CDAC Network members only) The production of some guidelines on issues to consider in the coordination of communications activities
  • The CDAC Network’s public website and interactive Member’s Area

6. Activities by CDAC Network member agencies

7. i. Information Needs in Dadaab Report (Internews and IMS)

Serious communication gaps between the humanitarian sector and refugees in Dadaab, Kenya, are increasing refugee suffering and putting lives at risk. This is the conclusion of a new joint assessment report released last week, which involved CDAC Network Steering Committee members Internews and IMS. Dadaab, the largest refugee camp complex in the world, is home to hundreds of thousands fleeing the drought in Somalia; people who are being put further at risk because of information gaps that are hampering the aid response. Click here to go to the Internews website and click here to go directly to the report. There is also a video report here. Click here to learn more about the article from IMS.


8. ii. Infoasaid Update

Preparedness - Message Library

The beta version (ie preview) of the web-based message library is now complete and was presented to the UN Clusters (Protection, Shelter, Education, Nutrition and early recovery) on 19th September in Geneva. Issues related to: improvements in the structure and functionality of the web tool that will hold the messages; the content of the messages; maintenance and hosting; and pilot testing of the messages were discussed. Overall, the message library was well-received and attendees offered helpful feedback. Several people expressed strong willingness to test the library in field. For more information contact


The Facilitators/Trainers Manual is now complete and a company specialising in e-learning has been contracted to translate the content into a meaningful, interactive e-learning experience. The e-learning course is targeted at aid agency staff and aims to raise awareness and provide very basic skills in two-way communication. Topics covered include: the importance of two way communications; knowing your target audience and how to communicate with them; crafting key messages; and developing communications strategies. The course will be ready in December 2011.

Needs Assessment

Questions on information needs and access have been developed and were presented to the Needs Assessment Task Force in July for inclusion in the Multi Cluster Initial Rapid Needs Assessment (MIRA) guidelines.  MIRA’s Technical Group is currently working on integrating the questions in the MIRA.


infoasaid plans to inform and support Save the Children’s communications response in Somalia as well as World Vision and Save the Children in north eastern Kenya. An infoasaid team will be deployed for a month in early October. For more information contact

Latest Media Landscape Guide

The Nepal Media Landscape Guide is now ready. Click here to find it on the infoasaid website.

9. iii. BBC Somali Lifeline Radio Service

The BBC Somali Service has launched a lifeline radio programme to provide information to populations affected by the current crisis across the Somali-speaking region. The show has covered a range of issues including: how to register in a camp; how to care for children while travelling long distances; how to identify malnutrition with an emphasis on early referrals; and toilet problems in camps, with practical information around hygiene. A short video describing the show and what it does can be found here.

10. Upcoming Events

3rd International Conference of Crisis Mappers (ICCM): Mainstreaming Crisis Mapping?

Hosted by the ICT4Peace Foundation, the Swiss Confederation and the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre. For full details click here or on the image.

14-15 November, Geneva