October 11, 2010
A group of Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) agencies commissioned DARA to carry out a real-time evaluation (RTE) of the response to the Zambezi river floods and Cyclone Favio in February 2007. Being one of the first of its kind, this evaluation formed a pilot RTE for a broader programme of such evaluations. The aim of this evaluation was to assess the overall appropriateness, coherence, timeliness and effectiveness of the response in the context of humanitarian reform, and to provide real-time feedback to help strengthen effective coordination and response among partners. A team of five carried out the RTE in April 2007 and collected a set of over 700 documents relating to the floods and cyclone response. These were indexed and distributed to the team complete with a search engine to access the data. In addition, a basic chronology was prepared, as well as a summary of the lessons learned from previous evaluations. The desk review was complemented with focus group meetings with beneficiaries enquiring about their experience of the floods and cyclone and their views on the response. The team met with over 400 beneficiaries at 16 different sites to capture their views. DARA visited both flood affected and cyclone affected areas. DARA evaluated and offered recommendations on the use of the cluster approach in Mozambique, emergency funding mechanisms, the connectedness of the response with the longer term context, the extent to which the needs of the effected population were met, and support for local institutions. There is severe flooding on the Zambezi every five to ten years, contributing to the region’s poverty, which in turn makes people more vulnerable to disaster.