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Role of organizations in preparedness and emergency response to flood disaster in Bangladesh

Role of organizations in preparedness and emergency response to flood disaster in Bangladesh The present study is to know the role of organizations and make an assessment on their assistance regarding preparedness and emergency response of flood disaster affected people. This study has used a mixed-method approach. Flood-affected people were the respondents to evaluate the organizational role. The study reveals that before the flood in 2017 to minimize the loss and damages, the GOs play a very effective role concerning the arrangement of preparatory meetings and preparing shelter centers, and NGOs play a very useful role in making arrangements for awareness-building training. During the emergency period, the GOs played a comparatively better role in providing CI sheets, agricultural assistance and cash money as relief for establishing housing facilities and emergency support. The NGOs played relatively a better role in providing food, water, clothes, medicine, etc. This study put forward complications such as limited sanctions, disruption of communication, lack of awareness of sufferers, and overlapping. The findings of this study would be a significant for the disaster policymakers, and civil societies. Keywords: Organizations (GOs & NGOs), Flood disaster, Preparedness, Emergency response, Bangladesh Introduction least 58 major floods hit in Bangladesh from 1954 to Bangladesh is one of the highly flood disaster-prone 2017, and 20,039 people died and also millions of people countries in the world. Every year thousands of people affected owing to catastrophic flood throughout the last are being affected by the flood; and they become hope- 47 years (1970–2017) (Relief 2013). In which 1966, 1987, less by losing their family members, relatives, and entire 1988, 1998 and 2007 flood was the most devastating properties. Therefore, immediately after such incidents, flood which affected millions of people in Bangladesh. organizational supports are very much needed to them. Likewise, this country faced one of the worst river flood- Almost 80% of the country consists of the flood plain of ing events on 12 August 2017, with high water levels the GBM basins, and some other minor rivers (Brouwer record, and the Ministry of Disaster Management and et al. 2007). Among the flood-prone areas of Bangladesh, Relief (MoDMR) stated that the floods were the most Char land (Island) is the most susceptible to frequent awful in at least 40 years (Philip et al. 2019). It disrupted flood, and the dwellers of these places are the supreme people’s normal life immensely. Thirty-one (31) districts vulnerable. There is an estimation that approximately 4– affected ruthlessly among the 64 districts of Bangladesh 5% of the population in Bangladesh lives in the char’s (Management 2007), and around 6.9 million people were land which covers almost 7200km (Kelly and Chowdh- affected (Philip et al. 2019), with 121 people dead (Nira- ury 2002; Mondal et al. 2015; Paul and Islam 2015). At pad 2017). Apart from these, crop damaged, disruption of communication and education, health issues, food problems, drinking water crises, and massive displace- Correspondence: hossainbabul@hhu.edu.cn ment were the main causes to make them more Department of Sociology, School of Public Administration, Hohai University, No.8 Focheng West Road, Jiangning, Nanjing 210000, China © The Author(s). 2020 Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/. Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 2 of 16 vulnerable in the flood-prone areas. Thus, flood disaster 2003; Few 2003; Ibrahim et al. 2017; Nur and Shrestha is such an event that cannot be prevented from happen- 2017; Smit and Pilifosova 2003). In the same way, few ing, but the impacts can be reduced if effective measures studies have emphasized the characteristics of the flood, are taken in time to reduce their severity, frequency, and the geographical location, the geomorphological setting possible size. and the cultural, political and socio-economic conditions In Bangladesh, response to flood disaster at the na- of the people at risk of flooding (Alcántara-Ayala 2002; tional level, the Ministry of Disaster Management and Choudhury 2005; Few 2003; Mutton and Haque 2004; Relief (MoDMR), and the Department of Disaster Thompson and Penning-Rowsell 1994; Zaman 1989, Management coordinate overall disaster management 1993). Also, several studies focusing on the effects of efforts. At every district, sub-district, and union level, floods and population displacement (Del Ninno et al. there are disaster management committees. In 1997, 2003; Dun 2011; Gray and Mueller 2012; Islam et al. the Ministry of Food and Disaster Management 2010; Paul and Rasid 1993; Zaman 1996) and the impact (MoFDM) issued a Standing Order on Disaster of climate change on the upcoming flooding (Kafi 2010; (SOD) which, in detail, describes the duties and re- Mirza 2002). There are some studies on the evaluation sponsibilities of all the concerned government agen- of existing structural flood dam projects (Hoque and cies for disaster management (Hasan et al. 2013). On Siddique 1995; Hossain and Sakai 2008), Flood mitiga- the other hand, NGOs operate at the grass-root level tion activities and their effectiveness (Shajahanl 2001) with communities and local organizations as partners and evaluation flood management strategies, including and take a participatory approach to development institutional measures (Adnan 1991; Brammer 1990). Be- planning. It is known that NGOs enjoy higher oper- sides, there are many researchers conducted on the con- ational flexibility as they are relatively free from bur- text of people’s indigenous/local knowledge and coping eau structures and red-tapes; and they are able to strategies to response flooding (Hossain et al. 2019; respond and adapt quickly and easily and often work Howell 2003; Islam et al. 2018; Paul and Hossain 2013; on behalf of the neediest, the poorest and the most Paul and Routray 2010). Thus, most of the research ac- vulnerable group (ISDR 2006). There are several cessible on the literature that uncovers the existing lit- NGOs working in the study villages such as SKS, erature is based on socioeconomic perspectives to GUK, SHACO, BRAC, ASA, etc. (Portal 2018). And, determine the impact and magnitude of floods and ad- there was no exception of organizational activities as just strategies. On the other hand, some articles found regards flood in 2017. Immediately they come forward as regards to people’s perception about flood manage- to help the flood-affected people and extended their ment and mitigation dealings take on by GOs and NGOs helping hand in different phases by taking numerous (S. K. Paul and Hossain 2013) and also the role of NGOs measures. to response of flood disaster management (Matin and Therefore, it is apparent that although Govt. and Taher 2001). After reviewing several pieces of literature, Non-govt. Organizations took various initiatives to it can be said that although many research works have support to the flood disaster-affected people; these been done in the field of flood disaster management but supports are not sufficient to cover the entire a few researches have been done on the organizational disaster-prone area or to cover entire disaster-affected role in preparedness and emergency response to flood people. Moreover, is their role fully effective in disaster-affected people. Therefore, there is a clear re- regaining the affected people’s normal course of activ- search gap here. Regarding this, to fill this research gap ities and sustainability in the livelihood? Therefore, the study purpose to analyze the preparedness and thepresent study is toevaluatethe role of organiza- emergency response to flood disaster carry out by the tions regarding preparedness and emergency response GOs and NGOs and also evaluate people’s perceptions and also try to find out the loopholes and drawbacks and satisfaction on their performances. of organizations’ responses to the 2017 flood-affected people in terms of people perception. Disaster management settings in Bangladesh: GO- NGO collaboration The relationship between the GO and the NGO is a Flood research scenarios: a brief review talking point in Bangladesh. After the devastating cyc- In the context of flood disasters researches, most of the lone of 1970 and the liberation war in 1971, the so- researches have been focused on the concept of vulner- cial structure was changed, and the economy was ability (Burton et al. 1993; Cannon 1994; Cannon et al. destroyed. Several non-government organizations were set up in that time to undertake the massive task of Standing Orders on Disaster was issued by the National Disaster rehabilitating the war-ravaged country. In independent Management Council (NDMC) under the direction of the Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh. Bangladesh, NGOs have emerged and grown very fast. Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 3 of 16 It is often said that Bangladesh is a very fertile land impact of the calamity through preparedness as miti- for NGOs. Since the beginning of the 1970s, gation measures as well as coping with the after- Bangladesh has virtually become a laboratory for the math. The government and non-government design and experimentation of different rural develop- organizations worked in a coordinated manner to ment models and approaches. Various agencies of bring relief to suffering people (Blair 2005). The task Government of Bangladesh, international donors, and was too great, and the scope remained for improving the non-government organizations have experimented the situation. Based on different studies and docu- with different models and approaches of institution- ments, it was found that the role of NGOs in disas- building for rural and local level development (Ami- ter management in Bangladesh is significant. nuzzaman 2000). These organizations were also ac- Presently, NGOs are giving emphasis to work on tively involved in providing their efforts with preventive measures as a strategy of disaster risk re- emergency response, recovery and rehabilitation activ- duction as numerous private donors and different ities to manage disasters over the periods. parts of CARE’s international organization. Among international organizations CARE, Islamic Development Bank (IDB), United Nations, UNICEF, Materials and methods WFP, and among non-governmental organizations Study area World Vision, Oxfam Australia. Muslim Aid, ASA, Bangladesh has many flood-prone areas in which Proshika, BRAC, SKS, GUK were especially involved Rangpur division is one of the most vulnerable areas. with relief and rehabilitation activities. Besides, Regarding this, Rangpur division has been selected Grameen Bank, Proshika, BRAC and ASA, etc. also purposively; and multistage area sampling method operate microcredit program that acts as a social has been applied for selecting subsequent adminis- safety net during a disaster (Hossain 2012). Compre- trative units as well as the ultimate sampling unit, hensive Disaster Management Program, with the which is the village. Subsequent administrative units technical assistance of UNDP, is presently in oper- were selected purposively according to the severity ation for the integration of disaster and development of flood in terms of people affected, death toll, concept as well as for improvement in coordination losses, and damages. Among the Rangpur division, between GO –NGOs’ efforts in response to disasters Gaibandha district is very adjacent to the river basin, at all levels. and it is the most susceptible district to happen fre- A review of the collaboration indicates three major quent flood. From the Gaibandha district, two Upa- types of arrangements: (a) Subcontract; (b) Joint im- zila (Sub-district) have been selected. The study area plementation; and (c) Government as a financier of selection procedure is as follows (Fig. 1): NGO projects (Bank 1996). The most common col- The study areas are riverine islands (Char) in laboration is the sub-contracting arrangement where Brahmaputra Rivers and geographically isolated from Government agencies enter into contracts with NGOs. the mainland (see the Fig. 2). The socio-economic Joint implementation on a partnership arrangement, condition of the study area is very fragile. There are where NGOs are involved either as co-financier or some poor indicators of the income of these house- joint executing agency with the Government, is least holds such as share-cropping, agricultural day labor, practiced. In the area of micro-credit, there is an and livestock rearing, small business, fishing, boat- emerging trend for the Government to finance NGOs’ manetc.However,the flood and riverbank erosion credit operations. are continuing the process to destroy their crops, The government, NGOs, people, and friends crops lands, homesteads. The dwellers of char, about around the world worked together in minimizing the 80% are living under ultra-poor (Islam 2018). Fig. 1 Selection process of the study area Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 4 of 16 Fig. 2 Map of the study area location (Using Arc GIS 10.5) Data collection, analysis and interpretation This study has used a mixed-method approach. Data for the study have been collected from both the pri- mary and secondary sources. Along with the second- ary literature review, questionnaire survey, observation, focus group discussion (FGDs) and key informant interviews (KII) have been conducted from the two study villages that were the most ruthlessly affected by the catastrophe flood in 2017. Flood- affected people were the respondents to evaluate organizational role. The researcher prepared two sets of structured interview schedule with close and open-ended questions to collect data based on the objectives of the study. At first, respondents have been selected among the flood-affected households (total households 1843) of two selected villages by using simple random sampling. According to the prevalent culture of Bangladesh, almost all households are centered by the male heads of households. Therefore, respondents were Focus group discussion participants were recruited the heads of the households. from the household questionnaire survey. Respondents For determining a representative sample size from the to the survey who had been flooded were asked if they category, the researcher has used the following statistical would be willing to participate in a focus group discus- formula-(Kothari 2004) sion to explore some of the issues in greater depth. Each of the FGDs group had 6–12 number of people partici- pated alongside two or three members of the project team. Interviews and focus groups discussion were held z  p  q  N in the Bengali language, and each session was recorded n ¼ ¼ 319 2 2 eðÞ N − 1þ z  p  q onto audiotape. Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 5 of 16 After completing the interview sessions, collected data condition of preparedness system in the study area by have been analyzed according to the objectives of the following heads and subheads. study. Quantitative data have been analyzed by using statistical tools, i.e. Statistical Package for Social Sciences Preparedness regarding receipt of information (SPSS) software version 20 and Microsoft Excel. Qualita- Along with Government Organization, the Non- tive data have been interpreted through textual and government Organization plays very effective role to document analyses. Five-point Likert scale has been used manage the flood disaster before happening the flood. In to analyze data on the attitude, experiences, and satisfac- which information is an essential tool of the prepared- tion of the disaster-affected people (Likert 1932). ness system in the flood disaster management perspec- tive in Bangladesh arena. Because of providing real information in time, vulnerable and affected people can Results and discussion save their lives and properties. There is a huge member An organization can play a vital role in overcoming its of staff working in GOs and NGOs concerning disaster- limitations in an organized way when disaster-affected related activities in the diverse territory in Bangladesh. people feel essential help before disaster and during the They undertake different kinds of measures to collect emergency period. There are two types of organizations disaster related information from numerous sources. in the country (GOs and NGOs) which play their role Then, if there is a possibility to happen a disaster like a for the betterment of the affected people in the crucial flood, service providers actively work to disseminate the moment. In Bangladesh, sustainable development is disaster’ information accurately to the vulnerable areas. closely linked with disaster reduction which needs an ef- Actually, organizations spread several types of informa- fective disaster management plan. Within the disaster tion before happening the flood disaster like what will be management plan, preparedness and emergency mea- the intensity of the upcoming flood, what types of mea- sures are taken by the government and the non- sures should be taken, where should take shelter, and so government organizations to minimize the loss and on. Dissemination of information regarding flood disas- damages caused by natural disasters like floods and also ter, the medium of information and time span of receiv- for its restoration. With government organizations, ing information has been analyzed as follows. NGOs take part in flood reduction activities, rescue, and Table 1 shows that 93.7% of respondents received in- recovery operations. Besides this, food and non-food formation before the devastating flood in 2017 occurred support are also being provided at the time of the flood in the study area, and only 6.3% of respondents did not disaster. Though we cannot protect flood disasters, some obtain any information about the flood. Table data also early initiatives and preparation can lessen the amount shows that the information receiving rate is almost the of loss and damages. It can help in saving lives and prop- same (91.7% and 95.7%) among the two study villages. erties caused by flood disasters; and if a flood occurs, the So, it can be said that the government and non- emergency response should be taken for the severely af- government organizations were very much prompt to fected people when they become helpless and hopeless. provide information. It is also mentionable that the re- This study has also designed to portray the role of vari- spondents who did not receive information before the ous organizations during preparedness and emergency disaster; some of them were out of the study area. situation. Table 1 also shows that 16.1% of respondents received information by radio, and only 8.7% of respondents re- Role of organizations in preparedness ceived information by TV at first. The highest number Disaster preparedness performed to ensure adequate re- of respondents (52.2%) received information from the sponse to its effects as a measure of action taken before announcement of Union Disaster Management Commit- the disaster occurred, and relief and recovery from its tee (UDMC) by announcing through loudspeakers, consequences eliminated the need for any last-minute 15.7% of respondents were informed about the flood dis- activity. Various agencies and individuals conduct flood aster from their neighbor, and only 7.4% of respondents disaster preparedness activities. Everyone has a distinct- received flood-related information from other sources. It ive role to play and unique accountabilities to achieve is significant that announcing through loudspeakers is when the flood disaster walkout. The aims of flood dis- much popular and important way to provide flood aster preparedness are – realizing what to do next in a disaster-related information to the people of the flood- disaster, knowing how to do it and equipping the right prone area as most of the rural people have no elec- tools to do it successfully. This challenging procedure tronic device to collect information and they remain en- might be able to take years before achieving a suitable gaged with their daily activities in the agriculture and levels and retaining such levels is a continuing determin- other fields. One of the Key Informant Interviewees has ation (Coppola 2006). This section shows the present also expressed the same opinion, but he added that the Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 6 of 16 Table 1 Dissemination, source and time span of receiving of information Name of study villages Getting information before flood Total Percentage Yes % No % Kalur Para 143 91.7 13 8.3 156 100 South Ullah 156 95.7 7 4.3 163 100 Total 299 93.7 20 6.3 319 100 Source of information Category Frequency Percentage Radio 48 16.1 Television (TV) 26 8.7 Miking by GOs & NGOs 156 52.2 Neighbor 47 15.7 Others 22 7.3 Receiving time Name of study villages Time Total Percentage In Time Late Frequency % Frequency % Kalur Para 114 79.7 29 20.3 143 100 South Ullah 141 90.4 15 9.6 156 100 Total 255 85.3 44 14.7 299 100 Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December 2018-April, 2019 local mosque (a Muslim place of pray) could be the an- natural disaster like flood, cyclone, etc. though the nouncement center as part of preparedness just before number of shelter center is not enough for the af- the disaster. fected people in the study area. There are only a few By receiving real information in time, vulnerable af- shelter centers in Rangpur division, which are not fected people can save their lives and properties. Table 1 enough considering the vast population (Statistics shows that 85.3% of respondents (out of information re- 2016). Generally, the Government makes education ceiver) received information in time, and as a result, they institutions as a shelter center in the disaster-prone could take preparation to save their valuable assets and areas due to lack of available shelter centers. On the their family members. Rest 14.7% of respondents received other hand, Non-government organizations make tem- information lately. Concerning this, the respondents porary basis shelter centers in a high place and local claimed, they could not get information in time due to NGOs’ offices. Therefore, Organizations tried to cre- lack of electronic compliance such as radio, television, as ate awareness among the people about the severity of well as some of them reported, they were out of the home flood disaster and tried to motivate for taking shelter while providing information by organization. For this in the shelter center. reason, they could not take measures timely. Table 1 Table 2 shows that 60.5% of respondents took shelter also shows that the highest number of respondents during the last 2017 flood disaster where 39.5% of re- (90.4% out of 156) from South Ullah received infor- spondents did not go to the shelter center for taking mation in time and (79.7% out of 143) of respondents shelter. Table 2 also shows that the highest number of were from Kalur Para. Findings show that most of the respondents (60.8%) from Kalur Para went to the the respondents (85.3%) from the study areas received shelter center. information in time and it also indicates the prompt- ness of government and non-government organiza- Table 2 Distribution of the respondents by going to the Shelter tions, but because of the severity of the flood, the Centre or not affected people lost almost everything. Taking Shelter Kalur Para % South Ullah % Total % Yes 87 60.8 94 60.3 181 60.5 Readiness concerning shelter Centre No 56 39.2 62 39.7 118 39.5 Shelter center is essential for the vulnerable people of Total 143 100 156 100 299 100 thedisaster-proneareatosavethe people andtheir valuable goods and documents during any devastating Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 7 of 16 Among the respondents who (39.5% out of 118) did committee members and the implementation of the not go to the shelter center out of them, 34.7% did not decision taken in the meeting. go for long-distance. There were some other reasons for Training Program creates awareness among the flood- not going to the shelter center such as; 9.3% for weak prone area’s people to protect themselves and their valu- shelter center, 13.6% for negative attitude, 22.9% for lack able goods when flood disaster hit. Generally, organiza- of information and 19.5% for taking initiatives lately (see tions arrange the training program including general the Fig. 3). Field observation showed that approximately people of the study area who are under the risk of flood 4 km distance from the mainland to char village, but disasters. most of the permanent shelter is more far away from the According to the Table 3 21.6% of respondents think study area. Usually, most of the people do not take shel- that government organizations arrange the training Pro- ter due to their homesickness; they always wait until the gram effectively, and the highest number of respondents floodwater hit their household. Local people always say, (54.9%) believe that non-government organizations can “We are dying or alive, we won’t go elsewhere from our arrange the training program effectively and the rest father, and Grandfather Homestead, rather than we will 23.5% of respondents feel that both of the organization die here”. Therefore, according to the people’s percep- can arrange the training Program effectively including tion, it can be said that more shelter centers need to be the local vulnerable people. It is significant that most of built to minimize long-distance. the respondents show their positive attitude towards For better preparedness, preparatory meeting, training non-government organizations regarding arranging program, preparing shelter center and medical prepar- training Program effectively. ation are very much essential to save the people and Before any flood disaster, shelter center should remain properties from the uncertain flood disaster. The follow- prepared for the poor disaster-affected people whose ing table shows the people’s perceptions regarding ef- own shelter is weak and vulnerable. Generally, govern- fective initiatives taken by the organizations. ment organizations are more responsive for preparing The preparatory meeting is very much important to the shelter center. know the real scenario of the general people of the On the basis of affected people perception, most of the disaster-prone area. Several types of government and respondents (43.9%) have argued that the government non-government organizations arrange the preparatory organizations play an effective role regarding the prepar- meeting from time to time. The Table 3 shows that ation of shelter center where 33.9% respondents have ar- the most of the respondents (53.0%) think that the gued that non-government organization plays an government organization can arrange the preparatory effective role regarding this. Rest 22.2% of respondents meeting successfully under Union Disaster Manage- have opined that both of the organizations play their role ment Committee (UDMC) where NGOs have also effectively regarding the preparation of shelter center. representatives but 33.9% of respondents think that There are some exceptional cases where NGOs role is NGOs can arrange meeting successfully and rest very effective regarding preparation of shelter center. 13.1% of respondents think both of the organizations South Ullah can be the example for this where 49.3% of can arrange the meeting successfully. The respondents respondents think that NGOs play an effective role for define here success on the basis of the presence of preparation of shelter center before the disaster. Fig. 3 Reason for not going to Shelter Center. Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 8 of 16 Table 3 Initiatives taken by organizations for preparedness effectively Initiatives Type of Organization and Percentage Total GOs % NGOs % Both % N % Preparatory Meeting 169 53.0 108 33.9 42 13.1 319 100 Training Program 69 21.6 175 54.9 75 23.5 319 100 Preparing Shelter 140 43.9 108 33.9 71 22.2 319 100 Medical Preparation 94 29.5 161 50.5 64 20.0 319 100 Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 After flood disaster, because of the unavailability of a children and older people are more fragile during the medical facility, affected people suffer in many ways. In- flood for this reason, they sent them to safer flood-free cluding first aid facilities, several types of medical facil- places. ities are needed for the affected people. Service providing organizations can come forward within very Rescue of family members (during 2017 flood) Rescue short possible time if they remain prepared. Concerning operation may not always be needed, but in some special medical preparation, 29.5% of respondents think that the cases, it is very important. Table 4 shows that family government organizations remain more prepared for members of 19.7% of respondents were rescued during providing services where 50.5% of respondents believe the fatal 2017 flood with the help of local people and that non-government organizations remain more pre- government and non-government organizations. Among pared for providing services and 20.0% of respondents the rescued people, more than 50% were rescued by figure out that both organizations remain prepared ac- GOs. cording to the ability. During the interview session, Project Implementation Officer (PIO) of Saghatta Upazila has explained that Emergency response: a review of performance of GOs among the NGOs ‘SKS’ played a vital role in the emer- and NGOs gency rescue operation at South Ullah under Bhartkhali Recovery can be parted into two individual phases, each Union. On the other hand, PIO of both Upazila has by way of distinct actions: short-term and long-term. opined that local people were very much cooperative The short-term recovery period immediately monitors with GOs and NGOs in this respect. Findings show that the disaster event, while emergency response activities GOs and neighbors of the respondents played a men- are underway. Short-term regaining activities try to tionable role to rescue the affected people who were steady victims’ lives by preparing them for a long road bounded by the sudden water. toward restructuring. These actions often considered as reactive actions or termed “relief,” include temporary Relief received from organizations during the shelter arrangements, emergency food and water distri- emergency period The Fig. 4 illustrates that among the bution, critical infrastructure restoration, and debris dis- respondents, 56.7% received aid from government relief posal. Short-term retrieval activities tend to be Program where 43.3% of respondents did not get any impermanent and often do not always directly avail to type of aid. Some of the respondents who did not get the actual long-term progress of the community. By the any assistance from government organizations following sub-section, a short-term (which started from the flood and lasted for 6 months) recovery activity done Table 4 Status of rescue operation during 2017 flood by GOs and NGOs has been discussed on people’s Frequency % perception. Response about rescue Yes 63 19.7 People’s perception regarding rescue and relief No 256 80.3 When the extreme flood-hit a region, at that time all houses inundate due to intrusion of flood water. Then Total 319 100 the trapped people leave their homes as soon as possible Rescuer and need to take shelter to save their life such as near GOs 32 50.8 the highway, school, and flood shelter centers. Along NGOs 16 25.4 with organizations, local people created a group by their Neighbor 15 23.8 next-door neighbor during the flood of 2017. At first, Total 63 100 both rescue teams give pay attention on the children and older people concerning their safety. Because Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 9 of 16 Fig. 4 Distribution of the respondents by receiving emergency aid. Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 demanded that they had needed but did not get. On the food items where mainly organizations separated into other hand, among the respondents, 72.4% received aid food and non-food items as relief delivery. In the flood from non-government relief program where 27.6% of re- of 2017, the GOs and NGOs provided rice, pulse, edible spondents did not get any type of aid. Findings show oil, iodized salt, sugar, baby cereal etc. as food items, that coverage of NGOs was higher than the GOs. Re- and these kinds of items delivered into various food spondents also demanded that the quality and quantity package. On the contrary, CI Sheet, Blankets, Shari, of aid of NGOs were better than the aid of GOs. Lungi, Mosquito net, rope, family kit, kitchen Set, ORS pkts, bucket and mug, soap, sanitary pad, washing pow- Main item of relief received from organizations Just der were the main items of non-food as relief. after occurring of the flood disaster, affected people need It can clearly be said that GOs played a comparatively several types of help as they lose almost everything. better role by providing cash money and CI (Corrugated People from all walks of life come forward to help dis- Iron) Sheet. On the other hand, NGOs played a com- tressed people with the government. The Government paratively better role by providing food, water, cloth, and tries to play its expected role through its various agen- medicine. cies and organizations. By Table 5, the researcher has attempted to represent the position of government orga- Amount of financial help from organizations as relief nizations and non-government organizations on the After the devastating flood disaster in 2017, losing all basis of providing the main item of relief. the belongings of the affected people, including their The Table 5 shows that out of total respondents 53.6% professional and livelihood materials- such as plow and of respondents received food item, 11.4% water, 22.9% cattle, boats and nets, they were completely helpless, cloth, 17.9% medicine, 36.7% cash, 17.9% CI sheet and jobless and their miseries knew no bound. Besides, Or- 8.2% other facilities from GOs and from NGOs Out of ganizations also gave pay attention to deliver monetary total respondents 74.3% received food, 52.4% received help as relief for temporary housing, dead parson, flood pure drinking water, 39.8% received cloth, 57.9% medi- insurance and so on. The government and non- cine, 10.3% cash, CI sheet 3.1% and 24.8% received other government organizations tried to provide monetary facilities. The organizations particularly emphasize on help with all types of necessary goods. Table 6 shows the condition of monetary help during the emergency period. Table 5 Item of relief received by the respondents from In analyzing the group of respondents based on the organizations amount of cash received, it is evident that 15.7% of re- Item of GOs NGOs spondents received Tk. 2001 to 4000 as relief from GOs Relief which is the highest among all groups and 15.0% of re- Frequency (N = 319) % Frequency (N = 319) % spondents received Tk. 4001 to 6000 which comes after Food 171 53.6 237 74.3 the former group. GOs provide monetary help in excess Water 37 11.4 167 52.4 of Tk. 6000 to very few respondents. In the case of Cloth 73 22.9 127 39.8 NGOs, the scenario is slightly different. The largest Medicine 57 17.9 184 57.9 number of respondents (14 or 4.4%) received monetary Cash 117 36.7 33 10.3 help between Tk. 1 to 2000 in case of NGOs out of total CI Sheet 57 17.9 10 3.1 respondents. The number of respondents who received monetary help between Tk. 2001 to 4000 is 11 or 3.4% Others 26 8.2 79 24.8 which comes after the previous group. NGOs did not Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December 2018-April, 2019 (Multiple Responses have been Considered) provide monetary help to any respondent in excess of Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 10 of 16 Table 6 Distribution of the respondents by financial help as equipment are very much important. No farmer can re- relief start their farming without these important items. Amount of GOs NGOs From Table 7, there were 36.1% of respondents re- cash ceived seed from GOs, 263.5% from NGOs, and 8.4% Frequency (N = 117) % Frequency (N = 33) % from both GOs and NGOs. The beneficiaries were sup- 0001–2000 11 3.4 14 4.4 ported for home-gardening in order to ensure nutrition 2001–4000 50 15.7 11 3.4 and reduced malnutrition. Observation shows that the 4001–6000 48 15.0 8 2.5 majority of small, marginal sharecropping farmers had 6001–8000 3 .9 0 0.0 lost their seeds. So, the seeds of eggplant, bottle gourd, 8001–10,000 5 1.6 0 0.0 spinach, carrot, radish, tomato, beetroot, spinach, okra, Obtained 117 36.7 33 10.3 gima kalmi, red pumpkin, ash gourd, amaranth, chilly, bitter gourd, and papaya were provided among the af- Could not get 202 63.3 286 89.7 fected people who were engaged in farming. The above Total 319 100 319 100.0 table also shows that regarding fertilizer, 60.5% of re- Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 spondents received fertilizer from only GOs and the rest Note: Taka (BDT) = Bangladesh Taka, approximately Tk. 84 = US$1 in these years 39.5% did not receive any fertilizer. Government and non-government organizations tried to provide import- Tk. 6000 during emergency response. One important ant equipment to the farmer regarding equipment, feature of the above table is that monetary coverage of 12.9% of respondents received equipment from GOs, NGOs is comparatively low than GOs both in terms of 9.1% from NGOs and 4.0% of respondents received amount of cash and number of recipients. From the equipment both from GOs and NGOs. Findings of the above discussion, it is observed that the proportion of above Table 7 display that GOs played a vital role in respondents getting monetary help out of total respon- providing seed, fertilizer, and agricultural equipment dents was very low in the case of NGOs, but in the case than NGOs. of GOs, the scenario was completely different. In respect to GOs, the proportion was 36.7% whereas that of NGOs Restoration program provided by organizations after 2017 was only 10.3% out of total respondents. flood Just after the occurrence of the devastating 2017 Provision of agricultural production materials flood disaster, to protect overall environmental deg- Bangladesh is mainly an agricultural based country radation and to develop a communication system, where almost 80% of people are directly and indirectly several types of initiatives had been taken by the relating to agriculture. Thus, most of the people in our government and non-government organizations. agro-based society are engaged with several types of cul- Since the total system was collapsed among the tivation, and the char land area is no exception. How- study areas, government and non-government orga- ever, the number of crop losers is very high, and the nizations started their operations to restore the amount of losses is also very high. Observation showed whole system with food and non-food relief item. It that almost all households confronted crop loss fully due was found from the participant observation and in- to extreme flood in 2017. terviews that GOs and NGOs gave emphasis espe- The local people usually select cropland to cultivate cially for the household development including local after the floodwater gone away. Sometimes they cannot infrastructure improvement where GOs repairing 4 cultivate due to seeds and agricultural materials. Con- km rural earthen road, one educational institution, cerning this, government and non-government organiza- five (5) tube well and two dams; raising of 35 house tions come forward to help the severely affected farmers plinth, one education’s field, and countless removal in the post-flood for providing seeds and materials. For of garbage from the villages as well as setting new better agricultural support, seed, fertilizer, and latrine (25). On the contrary, NGOs were engaged Table 7 Agricultural assistance as relief from GOs & NGOs (N = 319) Type of GOs NGOs Both Did not Get help Frequency % Frequency % Frequency % Frequency % Seed/plant 115 36.1 75 23.5 27 8.4 102 32.0 Fertilizer 193 60.5 0 0 0 0 126 39.5 Equipment 41 12.9 29 9.1 13 4.0 236 74.0 Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 11 of 16 mainly 5 km rural road repaired, reconstruction 12 problem. On the other hand, 26.9% of respondents tube well, raised 94 house plinths, setting 40 new la- think that officials are not sincere to announce the trines, cleaned 5 ponds, and countless medical information and 38.5% think that equipment (Cyr- support. ene, Radio, etc.) are not sufficient to announce the disaster-related information in time. Findings of the Problem and experience of the affected people Table 8 illustrate that most of the respondents get In the flood-prone zone particularly in the char land of disaster-related information in time without facing Bangladesh, almost every year most of the people face any problem and it also shows the organizational several types of problems caused by the flood disaster capability for the dissemination of the information. and gather bitter experience. The poor and vulnerable And at the same time, the paucity of equipment and people (Affected People) face several types of problems the insincerity of the officials are also seen as the to get services from the service providers. With some se- barriers for the affected people to receive disaster- vere problems, the disaster affected people in the study related information. area gather several types of experiences concerning get- During the disaster period, taking shelter in the shelter ting information, taking shelter in the shelter center dur- center is very essential for saving the lives of the affected ing the disaster and after the disaster, receiving people who are vulnerable or risky positions in the emergency relief, medical facilities, monetary help, etc. flood-prone zone of the country. Evacuation and giving shelter are very important to the affected people and ser- Problems of the affected people vice providers to save the lives, but both the affected Problems of the affected people have been discussed on people and service providers face some problems regard- preparedness and emergency response including some ing taking shelter in the shelter center. The Fig. 7 illus- sub-heads. The types of problems faced after the flood trates the problems faced by the affected people in 2017 by the affected people to get services from the regarding shelter in the shelter center during the disaster organizations have been discussed. Almost in all steps, period. the 2017 flood-affected people faced several types of From the Fig. 5, it can be seen that most of the re- problems that need to be discussed on the following spondents (53.9%) faced problems regarding shelter in heads to reveal the problems of affected people. the shelter center where 47.1% of respondents did not face any problem regarding this. Among the respon- During preparedness Information is very much signifi- dents who faced problems out of them 23.8, 18, 16.3, cant for the disaster affected people to save the lives and 32, and 9.9% faced problems due to long-distance, assets from the flood disaster when the flood-hit. By get- weak shelter centers, lack of information, homesick- ting disaster-related information properly, everybody can ness and taking initiatives lately respectively. Findings get enough time to go to the shelter center or safe side of the Fig. 5 show that most of the respondents and can save their valuable goods. The Table 8 shows (53.9%) faced problem regarding taking shelter in the that the problems regarding receiving information. From shelter center during the disaster and among them a the table, it is seen that among the respondents, 40.8% significant number of the respondents (23.8 & 32%) faced problems to get disaster-related information, and did not go to the shelter center due to long-distance 59.2% did not face any type of problem to get information. and homesickness. Again, among the respondents who faced problems (130) to get information, out of them 13.1% think For the period of rescue and relief In the flood-prone that lack of coordination is the main problem for zone of Bangladesh when flood disaster hit, the rescue not getting information whereas according to 21.5% program gets the highest priority to the organizations. of respondents, taking initiatives lately is the main With the organizations, the local people also help to Table 8 Problems regarding receiving information Categories Variable f N % Total % Status of facing problem Yes 130 319 40.8 100 No 189 59.2 Types of problems Lack of Coordination 17 130 13.1 100 Taking Initiatives Lately 28 21.5 Insincerity of Officials 35 26.9 Lack of Equipment (Cyrene, Radio etc.) 50 38.5 Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 12 of 16 Fig. 5 Problems in taking shelter in Shelter Center. Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 rescue the victims. According to the respondents, there period after the 2017 flood. The Table 10 shows the are some barriers to the rescue operation. The Table 8 main obstacle to get relief according to the respondents. demonstrates the main obstacle of the rescue program 11.6% of respondents have viewed that wastage of time in the study area during the devastating flood in 2017. is the main obstacle to get relief and 16.6% have argued Among the respondents from the beneficiary, 16.3% that communication is the main obstacle. have pointed out that lack of logistic support is the main The highest numbers of the respondents (27.9%) have barrier to the rescue program. 44.2% have viewed that opined that insufficiency is the main obstacle to get re- under developed communication system is another lief. Standing a lot of time, when the affected people do problem, because the study villages are basically char (is- not get the minimum desired amount, they become land) which is entirely disconnected from the mainland. shocked very much. According to 21.0%, 14.4%, and For this reason, there is no convenient direct way to 8.5% of respondents, political influence, nepotism, and communicate with the mainland. In the normal period corruption are the main obstacle to get relief, respect- like the dry season, people are used to communicating ively. According to the above data, only 21.0% respon- with the mainland by walking, and for carrying heavy dents have viewed that political influence was the main goods using horse carriage. During the high flood like barrier to get relief in the emergency period after the 2017, the means of transportation worsened automatic- flood in 2017, but the observation shows that political ally, and the infrastructure couldn’t able to support it influence were the main obstacles to the most of the af- due to the high floodwater stream as well as riverbank fected people in the study area at present. erosion. Therefore, the service provider could not exe- There are some influential persons in society who cute rescue program properly. 26.6% of beneficiaries have enough influence on society. They also have have argued that lack of suitable vehicle is the main bar- enough capacity to exercise power to control society rier and the rest of 12.9% have opined that lack of positively. If the influential persons try to influence trained manpower is the main barrier. From the Table 9, the wellbeing of the society, they can do that, but for according to the highest portion of the respondents, the self-interest sometimes they become part of unfair under developed communication system is the main means. problem considering rescue program. One of the KII (Key Informant Interviews) also has argued in favor of Table 9 Main barrier of rescue program under developed communication systems. He has opined Main barrier of rescue program Frequency % that most of the rural area of flood-prone/Char zone are Lack of logistic support 52 16.3 underdeveloped and condition of roads are not very Under developed communication system 141 44.2 good, in addition, most of them are kutcha (muddy) as Lack of suitable vehicle 85 26.6 well as water surrounded. Lack of trained manpower 41 12.9 Providing adequate food, water and medication are Total 319 100.0 very important to support the affected people, but there were some obstacles to get relief in the emergency Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 13 of 16 Table 10 Distribution of the respondents by the obstacle to role respectively. It is significant that according to most get relief of the respondents, the government organizations could Main obstacle to get relief Frequency % not play the expected role regarding preparedness. On the other hand, people’s perception was more posi- Wastage of time 37 11.6 tive to non-government organizations than government Communication 53 16.6 organizations. 15.8% of respondents think that NGOs Insufficiency 89 27.9 played a very good role where 31.0, 32.0, 13.7, and 7.5% Political influence 67 21.0 believe that non-government organizations played good, Nepotism 46 14.4 average, bad and very bad role respectively for prepared- Corruption 27 8.5 ness. Figure 6 shows that according to the highest num- ber of respondents, the non-government organizations Total 319 100.0 could play an expected role regarding preparedness. Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 Experience regarding relief Table 11 shows the responsible person for im- Sufficient relief materials help to restore the condition of proper relief distribution in the study area. Accord- affected people after any natural disaster. The govern- ing to 10.0% and 21.6% of respondents, rural elite ment and non-government organizations try to provide and local people’s representatives are responsible sufficient relief materials overcoming the limitations in parsons for improper relief distribution where about time of need. The following table describes the opinion one-third of the respondents (34.2%) have viewed of the affected people regarding the sufficiency of relief that local political leader is the responsible person. material obtained from GOs and NGOs. On the other hand, about one-fifth of the respon- Among the total respondents, only 5.6% think that re- dents (20.1%) have argued that subordinate of LPR lief material provided by GOs was very sufficient & LPL is responsible for improper relief distribution whereas 23.8% believe that relief material provided by and according to 14.1% of respondents; the office NGOs was very sufficient. Again, 14.1% believe that re- staff is responsible for improper relief distribution. lief material provided by GOs was sufficient whereas Findings of the above Table 11 show that local polit- 26.4% think that relief material provided by NGOs was ical leader (34.2%) and local people’s representatives sufficient. The highest number of respondents (32%, (21.6%) are responsible for improper relief distribu- 102) thinks that relief material provided by GOs was tion but considering the field observation and KII very insufficient whereas only 5.6% of respondents be- (Key Informant Interviews) opinion, it can be said lieve that relief material provided by NGOs was very in- that local political leaders are mainly responsible for sufficient. From the Fig. 7, it has been revealed that improper relief distribution. NGOs provided enough relief material to the flood in 2017 affected people than GOs. Experiences of the flood affected people From a formal and informal interview with the flood Organizational initiatives for preparedness disaster-affected people in the study area, it has been On the basis of overall performance regarding initiatives found that satisfaction depends on obtaining relief, qual- for preparedness, only 6.3% of respondents think that ity and quantity of relief, time of receiving relief, etc. government organizations played a very good role and Most of the affected people received relief (cash, food according to the rest 14.1, 34.8, 34.1 and 10.7%, govern- and non-food item) from GOs or NGOs or both GOs ment organizations play good, average, bad and very bad and NGOs. The Fig. 8 shows the level of satisfaction of the respondents for getting relief material from govern- Table 11 Responsible person for improper relief distribution ment and non-government organizations. Responsible person Frequency % The Fig. 8 shows that regarding GOs relief, only 6.6% Rural elite 32 10.0 of respondents were very satisfied and 16.3% of respon- Local people’s representatives 69 21.6 dents were satisfied whereas regarding NGOs’ relief, 29.5% were satisfied and 24.7% of respondents were very Local political leader 109 34.2 a b satisfied in terms of quality, quantity and time of receiv- Subordinate of LPR & LPL 64 20.1 ing emergency relief. Again, regarding GOs relief, 28.8% Office stuff 45 14.1 of respondents were unsatisfied, and 30.2% of respon- Total 319 100.0 dents were very unsatisfied, but regarding NGOs, 12.2% Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 of respondents were unsatisfied, and only 4.7% of re- Local People Representatives spondents were very unsatisfied. So, based on the Local Political leader Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 14 of 16 Fig. 6 Experiences regarding organizational initiatives for preparedness. Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 respondent’s perception, it can be said that the level of NGOs organized training programs very successfully. satisfaction towards NGOs was higher than the GOs. Organizations were very prompt for rescue and relief programs. Just after the occurrence of the 2017 flood, Conclusion and recommendations GOs played a very efficient and expected role providing Flood disaster is a frequent phenomenon in the study CI Sheet and monetary help, whereas; NGOs played a villages, for this reason, the dwellers depend on the aids very applicable and expected role providing food relief, of government organizations and non-government orga- medical and IGA facilities, etc. In respect to restoration nizations to cope with the overwhelming situation since program, selected NGOs performed an extraordinary job they lose almost everything. As such the GOs and NGOs which attracted the people’s concentration. Besides, provided their services as part of preparedness and while receiving service about rehabilitation facilities, the emergency response during the 2017 flood period. Both disaster affected people faced several problems and faced the GOs and NGOs showed their outstanding perform- bitter experience. Because of corruption, nepotism, im- ance with respect to disseminate information. Most of proper assessment, and difficult procedure, affected the respondents (93.7%) received information before the people did not get rehabilitation facilities properly. On disaster, and the main way of getting information was the basis of the objectives and found results of the study announcing through loud speakers by GOs and NGOs. and the overall situation of the role of organizations re- Also, they played a very effective role regarding initia- garding preparedness and emergency response of the tives for preparedness. GOs arranged preparatory meet- flood disaster-affected people, the researcher has pro- ings and prepare shelter centers very effectively, whereas posed some subjects to address this study. Fig. 7 Experience regarding sufficiency of obtained relief. Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December 2018-April, 2019 Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 15 of 16 Fig. 8 People’s satisfaction regarding relief from organizations. Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 I Along with public participation, organizations people for sustainable development. It lasts for years should work collectively in the flood crisis period for major flood disasters, so organizations should be because the present study found out that the lack more emphasized with respect to financial assist- of local people participation as a main gap in flood ance, housing reconstruction, IGA facilities and new management activities. work opportunities beyond localities. In which, fi- J NGOs should provide more financial help as relief nancial help is very helpful and important for the avoiding difficult procedures for the affected overall development of the disaster affected people. people. On the other hand, Organizations should The government and non-government organiza- make available financial help as loan for regaining tions should provide financial help for various pur- the IGA facilities within a short possible of time as poses with several terms and conditions. Affected most of the char land people lose their IGA people who are very much sincere and conscious; facilities which are very much related to the they can change their social position using obtained livelihood of the affected people. financial help efficiently. Because all types of K In addition, existing flood shelter centers can serve income-generating activities (IGA) are basically a small number of the population in the study dependent on financial help. area. Therefore, setting up of multipurpose flood Acknowledgments shelters is essential, and at least two storied new I would like to express my sincere appreciation to my study respondents schools should be built on flood-free highlands so who were patient interviewees and provided necessary information for this that villagers are less vulnerable to impending study. I shall never forget their sincere cooperation and support. floods. Moreover, training and awareness pro- Author’s contributions grams on flood preparedness should be more con- Corresponding author BH carried out the study, performed the statistical centrated and steadier. analysis, wrote the protocol, and wrote the draft of the manuscript. The L For easy and smooth relief distribution, all kinds of author(s) read and approved the final manuscript. complicated processes from the center to the Funding grassroots level should be avoided. Therefore, Not applicable’ for that section. corruption, nepotism and political and local interventions should be eliminated to ensure equal Availability of data and materials and fair distribution of relief goods among flood The data sets used and analyzed during the current study are available from the corresponding author on request. disaster victims, and the organizations may also increase monitoring and supervision to ensure Competing interests relief and equitable rehabilitation. The author declares that there is no competing of interest. M Along with short-term rehabilitation, organizations Received: 2 March 2020 Accepted: 13 October 2020 should give concern about long-term rehabilitation. Because of this path can give prosperity to cope with the adverse situation. 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Role of organizations in preparedness and emergency response to flood disaster in Bangladesh

Geoenvironmental Disasters , Volume 7 (1) – Dec 1, 2020

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2197-8670
DOI
10.1186/s40677-020-00167-7
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Abstract

The present study is to know the role of organizations and make an assessment on their assistance regarding preparedness and emergency response of flood disaster affected people. This study has used a mixed-method approach. Flood-affected people were the respondents to evaluate the organizational role. The study reveals that before the flood in 2017 to minimize the loss and damages, the GOs play a very effective role concerning the arrangement of preparatory meetings and preparing shelter centers, and NGOs play a very useful role in making arrangements for awareness-building training. During the emergency period, the GOs played a comparatively better role in providing CI sheets, agricultural assistance and cash money as relief for establishing housing facilities and emergency support. The NGOs played relatively a better role in providing food, water, clothes, medicine, etc. This study put forward complications such as limited sanctions, disruption of communication, lack of awareness of sufferers, and overlapping. The findings of this study would be a significant for the disaster policymakers, and civil societies. Keywords: Organizations (GOs & NGOs), Flood disaster, Preparedness, Emergency response, Bangladesh Introduction least 58 major floods hit in Bangladesh from 1954 to Bangladesh is one of the highly flood disaster-prone 2017, and 20,039 people died and also millions of people countries in the world. Every year thousands of people affected owing to catastrophic flood throughout the last are being affected by the flood; and they become hope- 47 years (1970–2017) (Relief 2013). In which 1966, 1987, less by losing their family members, relatives, and entire 1988, 1998 and 2007 flood was the most devastating properties. Therefore, immediately after such incidents, flood which affected millions of people in Bangladesh. organizational supports are very much needed to them. Likewise, this country faced one of the worst river flood- Almost 80% of the country consists of the flood plain of ing events on 12 August 2017, with high water levels the GBM basins, and some other minor rivers (Brouwer record, and the Ministry of Disaster Management and et al. 2007). Among the flood-prone areas of Bangladesh, Relief (MoDMR) stated that the floods were the most Char land (Island) is the most susceptible to frequent awful in at least 40 years (Philip et al. 2019). It disrupted flood, and the dwellers of these places are the supreme people’s normal life immensely. Thirty-one (31) districts vulnerable. There is an estimation that approximately 4– affected ruthlessly among the 64 districts of Bangladesh 5% of the population in Bangladesh lives in the char’s (Management 2007), and around 6.9 million people were land which covers almost 7200km (Kelly and Chowdh- affected (Philip et al. 2019), with 121 people dead (Nira- ury 2002; Mondal et al. 2015; Paul and Islam 2015). At pad 2017). Apart from these, crop damaged, disruption of communication and education, health issues, food problems, drinking water crises, and massive displace- Correspondence: hossainbabul@hhu.edu.cn ment were the main causes to make them more Department of Sociology, School of Public Administration, Hohai University, No.8 Focheng West Road, Jiangning, Nanjing 210000, China © The Author(s). 2020 Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/. Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 2 of 16 vulnerable in the flood-prone areas. Thus, flood disaster 2003; Few 2003; Ibrahim et al. 2017; Nur and Shrestha is such an event that cannot be prevented from happen- 2017; Smit and Pilifosova 2003). In the same way, few ing, but the impacts can be reduced if effective measures studies have emphasized the characteristics of the flood, are taken in time to reduce their severity, frequency, and the geographical location, the geomorphological setting possible size. and the cultural, political and socio-economic conditions In Bangladesh, response to flood disaster at the na- of the people at risk of flooding (Alcántara-Ayala 2002; tional level, the Ministry of Disaster Management and Choudhury 2005; Few 2003; Mutton and Haque 2004; Relief (MoDMR), and the Department of Disaster Thompson and Penning-Rowsell 1994; Zaman 1989, Management coordinate overall disaster management 1993). Also, several studies focusing on the effects of efforts. At every district, sub-district, and union level, floods and population displacement (Del Ninno et al. there are disaster management committees. In 1997, 2003; Dun 2011; Gray and Mueller 2012; Islam et al. the Ministry of Food and Disaster Management 2010; Paul and Rasid 1993; Zaman 1996) and the impact (MoFDM) issued a Standing Order on Disaster of climate change on the upcoming flooding (Kafi 2010; (SOD) which, in detail, describes the duties and re- Mirza 2002). There are some studies on the evaluation sponsibilities of all the concerned government agen- of existing structural flood dam projects (Hoque and cies for disaster management (Hasan et al. 2013). On Siddique 1995; Hossain and Sakai 2008), Flood mitiga- the other hand, NGOs operate at the grass-root level tion activities and their effectiveness (Shajahanl 2001) with communities and local organizations as partners and evaluation flood management strategies, including and take a participatory approach to development institutional measures (Adnan 1991; Brammer 1990). Be- planning. It is known that NGOs enjoy higher oper- sides, there are many researchers conducted on the con- ational flexibility as they are relatively free from bur- text of people’s indigenous/local knowledge and coping eau structures and red-tapes; and they are able to strategies to response flooding (Hossain et al. 2019; respond and adapt quickly and easily and often work Howell 2003; Islam et al. 2018; Paul and Hossain 2013; on behalf of the neediest, the poorest and the most Paul and Routray 2010). Thus, most of the research ac- vulnerable group (ISDR 2006). There are several cessible on the literature that uncovers the existing lit- NGOs working in the study villages such as SKS, erature is based on socioeconomic perspectives to GUK, SHACO, BRAC, ASA, etc. (Portal 2018). And, determine the impact and magnitude of floods and ad- there was no exception of organizational activities as just strategies. On the other hand, some articles found regards flood in 2017. Immediately they come forward as regards to people’s perception about flood manage- to help the flood-affected people and extended their ment and mitigation dealings take on by GOs and NGOs helping hand in different phases by taking numerous (S. K. Paul and Hossain 2013) and also the role of NGOs measures. to response of flood disaster management (Matin and Therefore, it is apparent that although Govt. and Taher 2001). After reviewing several pieces of literature, Non-govt. Organizations took various initiatives to it can be said that although many research works have support to the flood disaster-affected people; these been done in the field of flood disaster management but supports are not sufficient to cover the entire a few researches have been done on the organizational disaster-prone area or to cover entire disaster-affected role in preparedness and emergency response to flood people. Moreover, is their role fully effective in disaster-affected people. Therefore, there is a clear re- regaining the affected people’s normal course of activ- search gap here. Regarding this, to fill this research gap ities and sustainability in the livelihood? Therefore, the study purpose to analyze the preparedness and thepresent study is toevaluatethe role of organiza- emergency response to flood disaster carry out by the tions regarding preparedness and emergency response GOs and NGOs and also evaluate people’s perceptions and also try to find out the loopholes and drawbacks and satisfaction on their performances. of organizations’ responses to the 2017 flood-affected people in terms of people perception. Disaster management settings in Bangladesh: GO- NGO collaboration The relationship between the GO and the NGO is a Flood research scenarios: a brief review talking point in Bangladesh. After the devastating cyc- In the context of flood disasters researches, most of the lone of 1970 and the liberation war in 1971, the so- researches have been focused on the concept of vulner- cial structure was changed, and the economy was ability (Burton et al. 1993; Cannon 1994; Cannon et al. destroyed. Several non-government organizations were set up in that time to undertake the massive task of Standing Orders on Disaster was issued by the National Disaster rehabilitating the war-ravaged country. In independent Management Council (NDMC) under the direction of the Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh. Bangladesh, NGOs have emerged and grown very fast. Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 3 of 16 It is often said that Bangladesh is a very fertile land impact of the calamity through preparedness as miti- for NGOs. Since the beginning of the 1970s, gation measures as well as coping with the after- Bangladesh has virtually become a laboratory for the math. The government and non-government design and experimentation of different rural develop- organizations worked in a coordinated manner to ment models and approaches. Various agencies of bring relief to suffering people (Blair 2005). The task Government of Bangladesh, international donors, and was too great, and the scope remained for improving the non-government organizations have experimented the situation. Based on different studies and docu- with different models and approaches of institution- ments, it was found that the role of NGOs in disas- building for rural and local level development (Ami- ter management in Bangladesh is significant. nuzzaman 2000). These organizations were also ac- Presently, NGOs are giving emphasis to work on tively involved in providing their efforts with preventive measures as a strategy of disaster risk re- emergency response, recovery and rehabilitation activ- duction as numerous private donors and different ities to manage disasters over the periods. parts of CARE’s international organization. Among international organizations CARE, Islamic Development Bank (IDB), United Nations, UNICEF, Materials and methods WFP, and among non-governmental organizations Study area World Vision, Oxfam Australia. Muslim Aid, ASA, Bangladesh has many flood-prone areas in which Proshika, BRAC, SKS, GUK were especially involved Rangpur division is one of the most vulnerable areas. with relief and rehabilitation activities. Besides, Regarding this, Rangpur division has been selected Grameen Bank, Proshika, BRAC and ASA, etc. also purposively; and multistage area sampling method operate microcredit program that acts as a social has been applied for selecting subsequent adminis- safety net during a disaster (Hossain 2012). Compre- trative units as well as the ultimate sampling unit, hensive Disaster Management Program, with the which is the village. Subsequent administrative units technical assistance of UNDP, is presently in oper- were selected purposively according to the severity ation for the integration of disaster and development of flood in terms of people affected, death toll, concept as well as for improvement in coordination losses, and damages. Among the Rangpur division, between GO –NGOs’ efforts in response to disasters Gaibandha district is very adjacent to the river basin, at all levels. and it is the most susceptible district to happen fre- A review of the collaboration indicates three major quent flood. From the Gaibandha district, two Upa- types of arrangements: (a) Subcontract; (b) Joint im- zila (Sub-district) have been selected. The study area plementation; and (c) Government as a financier of selection procedure is as follows (Fig. 1): NGO projects (Bank 1996). The most common col- The study areas are riverine islands (Char) in laboration is the sub-contracting arrangement where Brahmaputra Rivers and geographically isolated from Government agencies enter into contracts with NGOs. the mainland (see the Fig. 2). The socio-economic Joint implementation on a partnership arrangement, condition of the study area is very fragile. There are where NGOs are involved either as co-financier or some poor indicators of the income of these house- joint executing agency with the Government, is least holds such as share-cropping, agricultural day labor, practiced. In the area of micro-credit, there is an and livestock rearing, small business, fishing, boat- emerging trend for the Government to finance NGOs’ manetc.However,the flood and riverbank erosion credit operations. are continuing the process to destroy their crops, The government, NGOs, people, and friends crops lands, homesteads. The dwellers of char, about around the world worked together in minimizing the 80% are living under ultra-poor (Islam 2018). Fig. 1 Selection process of the study area Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 4 of 16 Fig. 2 Map of the study area location (Using Arc GIS 10.5) Data collection, analysis and interpretation This study has used a mixed-method approach. Data for the study have been collected from both the pri- mary and secondary sources. Along with the second- ary literature review, questionnaire survey, observation, focus group discussion (FGDs) and key informant interviews (KII) have been conducted from the two study villages that were the most ruthlessly affected by the catastrophe flood in 2017. Flood- affected people were the respondents to evaluate organizational role. The researcher prepared two sets of structured interview schedule with close and open-ended questions to collect data based on the objectives of the study. At first, respondents have been selected among the flood-affected households (total households 1843) of two selected villages by using simple random sampling. According to the prevalent culture of Bangladesh, almost all households are centered by the male heads of households. Therefore, respondents were Focus group discussion participants were recruited the heads of the households. from the household questionnaire survey. Respondents For determining a representative sample size from the to the survey who had been flooded were asked if they category, the researcher has used the following statistical would be willing to participate in a focus group discus- formula-(Kothari 2004) sion to explore some of the issues in greater depth. Each of the FGDs group had 6–12 number of people partici- pated alongside two or three members of the project team. Interviews and focus groups discussion were held z  p  q  N in the Bengali language, and each session was recorded n ¼ ¼ 319 2 2 eðÞ N − 1þ z  p  q onto audiotape. Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 5 of 16 After completing the interview sessions, collected data condition of preparedness system in the study area by have been analyzed according to the objectives of the following heads and subheads. study. Quantitative data have been analyzed by using statistical tools, i.e. Statistical Package for Social Sciences Preparedness regarding receipt of information (SPSS) software version 20 and Microsoft Excel. Qualita- Along with Government Organization, the Non- tive data have been interpreted through textual and government Organization plays very effective role to document analyses. Five-point Likert scale has been used manage the flood disaster before happening the flood. In to analyze data on the attitude, experiences, and satisfac- which information is an essential tool of the prepared- tion of the disaster-affected people (Likert 1932). ness system in the flood disaster management perspec- tive in Bangladesh arena. Because of providing real information in time, vulnerable and affected people can Results and discussion save their lives and properties. There is a huge member An organization can play a vital role in overcoming its of staff working in GOs and NGOs concerning disaster- limitations in an organized way when disaster-affected related activities in the diverse territory in Bangladesh. people feel essential help before disaster and during the They undertake different kinds of measures to collect emergency period. There are two types of organizations disaster related information from numerous sources. in the country (GOs and NGOs) which play their role Then, if there is a possibility to happen a disaster like a for the betterment of the affected people in the crucial flood, service providers actively work to disseminate the moment. In Bangladesh, sustainable development is disaster’ information accurately to the vulnerable areas. closely linked with disaster reduction which needs an ef- Actually, organizations spread several types of informa- fective disaster management plan. Within the disaster tion before happening the flood disaster like what will be management plan, preparedness and emergency mea- the intensity of the upcoming flood, what types of mea- sures are taken by the government and the non- sures should be taken, where should take shelter, and so government organizations to minimize the loss and on. Dissemination of information regarding flood disas- damages caused by natural disasters like floods and also ter, the medium of information and time span of receiv- for its restoration. With government organizations, ing information has been analyzed as follows. NGOs take part in flood reduction activities, rescue, and Table 1 shows that 93.7% of respondents received in- recovery operations. Besides this, food and non-food formation before the devastating flood in 2017 occurred support are also being provided at the time of the flood in the study area, and only 6.3% of respondents did not disaster. Though we cannot protect flood disasters, some obtain any information about the flood. Table data also early initiatives and preparation can lessen the amount shows that the information receiving rate is almost the of loss and damages. It can help in saving lives and prop- same (91.7% and 95.7%) among the two study villages. erties caused by flood disasters; and if a flood occurs, the So, it can be said that the government and non- emergency response should be taken for the severely af- government organizations were very much prompt to fected people when they become helpless and hopeless. provide information. It is also mentionable that the re- This study has also designed to portray the role of vari- spondents who did not receive information before the ous organizations during preparedness and emergency disaster; some of them were out of the study area. situation. Table 1 also shows that 16.1% of respondents received information by radio, and only 8.7% of respondents re- Role of organizations in preparedness ceived information by TV at first. The highest number Disaster preparedness performed to ensure adequate re- of respondents (52.2%) received information from the sponse to its effects as a measure of action taken before announcement of Union Disaster Management Commit- the disaster occurred, and relief and recovery from its tee (UDMC) by announcing through loudspeakers, consequences eliminated the need for any last-minute 15.7% of respondents were informed about the flood dis- activity. Various agencies and individuals conduct flood aster from their neighbor, and only 7.4% of respondents disaster preparedness activities. Everyone has a distinct- received flood-related information from other sources. It ive role to play and unique accountabilities to achieve is significant that announcing through loudspeakers is when the flood disaster walkout. The aims of flood dis- much popular and important way to provide flood aster preparedness are – realizing what to do next in a disaster-related information to the people of the flood- disaster, knowing how to do it and equipping the right prone area as most of the rural people have no elec- tools to do it successfully. This challenging procedure tronic device to collect information and they remain en- might be able to take years before achieving a suitable gaged with their daily activities in the agriculture and levels and retaining such levels is a continuing determin- other fields. One of the Key Informant Interviewees has ation (Coppola 2006). This section shows the present also expressed the same opinion, but he added that the Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 6 of 16 Table 1 Dissemination, source and time span of receiving of information Name of study villages Getting information before flood Total Percentage Yes % No % Kalur Para 143 91.7 13 8.3 156 100 South Ullah 156 95.7 7 4.3 163 100 Total 299 93.7 20 6.3 319 100 Source of information Category Frequency Percentage Radio 48 16.1 Television (TV) 26 8.7 Miking by GOs & NGOs 156 52.2 Neighbor 47 15.7 Others 22 7.3 Receiving time Name of study villages Time Total Percentage In Time Late Frequency % Frequency % Kalur Para 114 79.7 29 20.3 143 100 South Ullah 141 90.4 15 9.6 156 100 Total 255 85.3 44 14.7 299 100 Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December 2018-April, 2019 local mosque (a Muslim place of pray) could be the an- natural disaster like flood, cyclone, etc. though the nouncement center as part of preparedness just before number of shelter center is not enough for the af- the disaster. fected people in the study area. There are only a few By receiving real information in time, vulnerable af- shelter centers in Rangpur division, which are not fected people can save their lives and properties. Table 1 enough considering the vast population (Statistics shows that 85.3% of respondents (out of information re- 2016). Generally, the Government makes education ceiver) received information in time, and as a result, they institutions as a shelter center in the disaster-prone could take preparation to save their valuable assets and areas due to lack of available shelter centers. On the their family members. Rest 14.7% of respondents received other hand, Non-government organizations make tem- information lately. Concerning this, the respondents porary basis shelter centers in a high place and local claimed, they could not get information in time due to NGOs’ offices. Therefore, Organizations tried to cre- lack of electronic compliance such as radio, television, as ate awareness among the people about the severity of well as some of them reported, they were out of the home flood disaster and tried to motivate for taking shelter while providing information by organization. For this in the shelter center. reason, they could not take measures timely. Table 1 Table 2 shows that 60.5% of respondents took shelter also shows that the highest number of respondents during the last 2017 flood disaster where 39.5% of re- (90.4% out of 156) from South Ullah received infor- spondents did not go to the shelter center for taking mation in time and (79.7% out of 143) of respondents shelter. Table 2 also shows that the highest number of were from Kalur Para. Findings show that most of the respondents (60.8%) from Kalur Para went to the the respondents (85.3%) from the study areas received shelter center. information in time and it also indicates the prompt- ness of government and non-government organiza- Table 2 Distribution of the respondents by going to the Shelter tions, but because of the severity of the flood, the Centre or not affected people lost almost everything. Taking Shelter Kalur Para % South Ullah % Total % Yes 87 60.8 94 60.3 181 60.5 Readiness concerning shelter Centre No 56 39.2 62 39.7 118 39.5 Shelter center is essential for the vulnerable people of Total 143 100 156 100 299 100 thedisaster-proneareatosavethe people andtheir valuable goods and documents during any devastating Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 7 of 16 Among the respondents who (39.5% out of 118) did committee members and the implementation of the not go to the shelter center out of them, 34.7% did not decision taken in the meeting. go for long-distance. There were some other reasons for Training Program creates awareness among the flood- not going to the shelter center such as; 9.3% for weak prone area’s people to protect themselves and their valu- shelter center, 13.6% for negative attitude, 22.9% for lack able goods when flood disaster hit. Generally, organiza- of information and 19.5% for taking initiatives lately (see tions arrange the training program including general the Fig. 3). Field observation showed that approximately people of the study area who are under the risk of flood 4 km distance from the mainland to char village, but disasters. most of the permanent shelter is more far away from the According to the Table 3 21.6% of respondents think study area. Usually, most of the people do not take shel- that government organizations arrange the training Pro- ter due to their homesickness; they always wait until the gram effectively, and the highest number of respondents floodwater hit their household. Local people always say, (54.9%) believe that non-government organizations can “We are dying or alive, we won’t go elsewhere from our arrange the training program effectively and the rest father, and Grandfather Homestead, rather than we will 23.5% of respondents feel that both of the organization die here”. Therefore, according to the people’s percep- can arrange the training Program effectively including tion, it can be said that more shelter centers need to be the local vulnerable people. It is significant that most of built to minimize long-distance. the respondents show their positive attitude towards For better preparedness, preparatory meeting, training non-government organizations regarding arranging program, preparing shelter center and medical prepar- training Program effectively. ation are very much essential to save the people and Before any flood disaster, shelter center should remain properties from the uncertain flood disaster. The follow- prepared for the poor disaster-affected people whose ing table shows the people’s perceptions regarding ef- own shelter is weak and vulnerable. Generally, govern- fective initiatives taken by the organizations. ment organizations are more responsive for preparing The preparatory meeting is very much important to the shelter center. know the real scenario of the general people of the On the basis of affected people perception, most of the disaster-prone area. Several types of government and respondents (43.9%) have argued that the government non-government organizations arrange the preparatory organizations play an effective role regarding the prepar- meeting from time to time. The Table 3 shows that ation of shelter center where 33.9% respondents have ar- the most of the respondents (53.0%) think that the gued that non-government organization plays an government organization can arrange the preparatory effective role regarding this. Rest 22.2% of respondents meeting successfully under Union Disaster Manage- have opined that both of the organizations play their role ment Committee (UDMC) where NGOs have also effectively regarding the preparation of shelter center. representatives but 33.9% of respondents think that There are some exceptional cases where NGOs role is NGOs can arrange meeting successfully and rest very effective regarding preparation of shelter center. 13.1% of respondents think both of the organizations South Ullah can be the example for this where 49.3% of can arrange the meeting successfully. The respondents respondents think that NGOs play an effective role for define here success on the basis of the presence of preparation of shelter center before the disaster. Fig. 3 Reason for not going to Shelter Center. Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 8 of 16 Table 3 Initiatives taken by organizations for preparedness effectively Initiatives Type of Organization and Percentage Total GOs % NGOs % Both % N % Preparatory Meeting 169 53.0 108 33.9 42 13.1 319 100 Training Program 69 21.6 175 54.9 75 23.5 319 100 Preparing Shelter 140 43.9 108 33.9 71 22.2 319 100 Medical Preparation 94 29.5 161 50.5 64 20.0 319 100 Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 After flood disaster, because of the unavailability of a children and older people are more fragile during the medical facility, affected people suffer in many ways. In- flood for this reason, they sent them to safer flood-free cluding first aid facilities, several types of medical facil- places. ities are needed for the affected people. Service providing organizations can come forward within very Rescue of family members (during 2017 flood) Rescue short possible time if they remain prepared. Concerning operation may not always be needed, but in some special medical preparation, 29.5% of respondents think that the cases, it is very important. Table 4 shows that family government organizations remain more prepared for members of 19.7% of respondents were rescued during providing services where 50.5% of respondents believe the fatal 2017 flood with the help of local people and that non-government organizations remain more pre- government and non-government organizations. Among pared for providing services and 20.0% of respondents the rescued people, more than 50% were rescued by figure out that both organizations remain prepared ac- GOs. cording to the ability. During the interview session, Project Implementation Officer (PIO) of Saghatta Upazila has explained that Emergency response: a review of performance of GOs among the NGOs ‘SKS’ played a vital role in the emer- and NGOs gency rescue operation at South Ullah under Bhartkhali Recovery can be parted into two individual phases, each Union. On the other hand, PIO of both Upazila has by way of distinct actions: short-term and long-term. opined that local people were very much cooperative The short-term recovery period immediately monitors with GOs and NGOs in this respect. Findings show that the disaster event, while emergency response activities GOs and neighbors of the respondents played a men- are underway. Short-term regaining activities try to tionable role to rescue the affected people who were steady victims’ lives by preparing them for a long road bounded by the sudden water. toward restructuring. These actions often considered as reactive actions or termed “relief,” include temporary Relief received from organizations during the shelter arrangements, emergency food and water distri- emergency period The Fig. 4 illustrates that among the bution, critical infrastructure restoration, and debris dis- respondents, 56.7% received aid from government relief posal. Short-term retrieval activities tend to be Program where 43.3% of respondents did not get any impermanent and often do not always directly avail to type of aid. Some of the respondents who did not get the actual long-term progress of the community. By the any assistance from government organizations following sub-section, a short-term (which started from the flood and lasted for 6 months) recovery activity done Table 4 Status of rescue operation during 2017 flood by GOs and NGOs has been discussed on people’s Frequency % perception. Response about rescue Yes 63 19.7 People’s perception regarding rescue and relief No 256 80.3 When the extreme flood-hit a region, at that time all houses inundate due to intrusion of flood water. Then Total 319 100 the trapped people leave their homes as soon as possible Rescuer and need to take shelter to save their life such as near GOs 32 50.8 the highway, school, and flood shelter centers. Along NGOs 16 25.4 with organizations, local people created a group by their Neighbor 15 23.8 next-door neighbor during the flood of 2017. At first, Total 63 100 both rescue teams give pay attention on the children and older people concerning their safety. Because Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 9 of 16 Fig. 4 Distribution of the respondents by receiving emergency aid. Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 demanded that they had needed but did not get. On the food items where mainly organizations separated into other hand, among the respondents, 72.4% received aid food and non-food items as relief delivery. In the flood from non-government relief program where 27.6% of re- of 2017, the GOs and NGOs provided rice, pulse, edible spondents did not get any type of aid. Findings show oil, iodized salt, sugar, baby cereal etc. as food items, that coverage of NGOs was higher than the GOs. Re- and these kinds of items delivered into various food spondents also demanded that the quality and quantity package. On the contrary, CI Sheet, Blankets, Shari, of aid of NGOs were better than the aid of GOs. Lungi, Mosquito net, rope, family kit, kitchen Set, ORS pkts, bucket and mug, soap, sanitary pad, washing pow- Main item of relief received from organizations Just der were the main items of non-food as relief. after occurring of the flood disaster, affected people need It can clearly be said that GOs played a comparatively several types of help as they lose almost everything. better role by providing cash money and CI (Corrugated People from all walks of life come forward to help dis- Iron) Sheet. On the other hand, NGOs played a com- tressed people with the government. The Government paratively better role by providing food, water, cloth, and tries to play its expected role through its various agen- medicine. cies and organizations. By Table 5, the researcher has attempted to represent the position of government orga- Amount of financial help from organizations as relief nizations and non-government organizations on the After the devastating flood disaster in 2017, losing all basis of providing the main item of relief. the belongings of the affected people, including their The Table 5 shows that out of total respondents 53.6% professional and livelihood materials- such as plow and of respondents received food item, 11.4% water, 22.9% cattle, boats and nets, they were completely helpless, cloth, 17.9% medicine, 36.7% cash, 17.9% CI sheet and jobless and their miseries knew no bound. Besides, Or- 8.2% other facilities from GOs and from NGOs Out of ganizations also gave pay attention to deliver monetary total respondents 74.3% received food, 52.4% received help as relief for temporary housing, dead parson, flood pure drinking water, 39.8% received cloth, 57.9% medi- insurance and so on. The government and non- cine, 10.3% cash, CI sheet 3.1% and 24.8% received other government organizations tried to provide monetary facilities. The organizations particularly emphasize on help with all types of necessary goods. Table 6 shows the condition of monetary help during the emergency period. Table 5 Item of relief received by the respondents from In analyzing the group of respondents based on the organizations amount of cash received, it is evident that 15.7% of re- Item of GOs NGOs spondents received Tk. 2001 to 4000 as relief from GOs Relief which is the highest among all groups and 15.0% of re- Frequency (N = 319) % Frequency (N = 319) % spondents received Tk. 4001 to 6000 which comes after Food 171 53.6 237 74.3 the former group. GOs provide monetary help in excess Water 37 11.4 167 52.4 of Tk. 6000 to very few respondents. In the case of Cloth 73 22.9 127 39.8 NGOs, the scenario is slightly different. The largest Medicine 57 17.9 184 57.9 number of respondents (14 or 4.4%) received monetary Cash 117 36.7 33 10.3 help between Tk. 1 to 2000 in case of NGOs out of total CI Sheet 57 17.9 10 3.1 respondents. The number of respondents who received monetary help between Tk. 2001 to 4000 is 11 or 3.4% Others 26 8.2 79 24.8 which comes after the previous group. NGOs did not Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December 2018-April, 2019 (Multiple Responses have been Considered) provide monetary help to any respondent in excess of Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 10 of 16 Table 6 Distribution of the respondents by financial help as equipment are very much important. No farmer can re- relief start their farming without these important items. Amount of GOs NGOs From Table 7, there were 36.1% of respondents re- cash ceived seed from GOs, 263.5% from NGOs, and 8.4% Frequency (N = 117) % Frequency (N = 33) % from both GOs and NGOs. The beneficiaries were sup- 0001–2000 11 3.4 14 4.4 ported for home-gardening in order to ensure nutrition 2001–4000 50 15.7 11 3.4 and reduced malnutrition. Observation shows that the 4001–6000 48 15.0 8 2.5 majority of small, marginal sharecropping farmers had 6001–8000 3 .9 0 0.0 lost their seeds. So, the seeds of eggplant, bottle gourd, 8001–10,000 5 1.6 0 0.0 spinach, carrot, radish, tomato, beetroot, spinach, okra, Obtained 117 36.7 33 10.3 gima kalmi, red pumpkin, ash gourd, amaranth, chilly, bitter gourd, and papaya were provided among the af- Could not get 202 63.3 286 89.7 fected people who were engaged in farming. The above Total 319 100 319 100.0 table also shows that regarding fertilizer, 60.5% of re- Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 spondents received fertilizer from only GOs and the rest Note: Taka (BDT) = Bangladesh Taka, approximately Tk. 84 = US$1 in these years 39.5% did not receive any fertilizer. Government and non-government organizations tried to provide import- Tk. 6000 during emergency response. One important ant equipment to the farmer regarding equipment, feature of the above table is that monetary coverage of 12.9% of respondents received equipment from GOs, NGOs is comparatively low than GOs both in terms of 9.1% from NGOs and 4.0% of respondents received amount of cash and number of recipients. From the equipment both from GOs and NGOs. Findings of the above discussion, it is observed that the proportion of above Table 7 display that GOs played a vital role in respondents getting monetary help out of total respon- providing seed, fertilizer, and agricultural equipment dents was very low in the case of NGOs, but in the case than NGOs. of GOs, the scenario was completely different. In respect to GOs, the proportion was 36.7% whereas that of NGOs Restoration program provided by organizations after 2017 was only 10.3% out of total respondents. flood Just after the occurrence of the devastating 2017 Provision of agricultural production materials flood disaster, to protect overall environmental deg- Bangladesh is mainly an agricultural based country radation and to develop a communication system, where almost 80% of people are directly and indirectly several types of initiatives had been taken by the relating to agriculture. Thus, most of the people in our government and non-government organizations. agro-based society are engaged with several types of cul- Since the total system was collapsed among the tivation, and the char land area is no exception. How- study areas, government and non-government orga- ever, the number of crop losers is very high, and the nizations started their operations to restore the amount of losses is also very high. Observation showed whole system with food and non-food relief item. It that almost all households confronted crop loss fully due was found from the participant observation and in- to extreme flood in 2017. terviews that GOs and NGOs gave emphasis espe- The local people usually select cropland to cultivate cially for the household development including local after the floodwater gone away. Sometimes they cannot infrastructure improvement where GOs repairing 4 cultivate due to seeds and agricultural materials. Con- km rural earthen road, one educational institution, cerning this, government and non-government organiza- five (5) tube well and two dams; raising of 35 house tions come forward to help the severely affected farmers plinth, one education’s field, and countless removal in the post-flood for providing seeds and materials. For of garbage from the villages as well as setting new better agricultural support, seed, fertilizer, and latrine (25). On the contrary, NGOs were engaged Table 7 Agricultural assistance as relief from GOs & NGOs (N = 319) Type of GOs NGOs Both Did not Get help Frequency % Frequency % Frequency % Frequency % Seed/plant 115 36.1 75 23.5 27 8.4 102 32.0 Fertilizer 193 60.5 0 0 0 0 126 39.5 Equipment 41 12.9 29 9.1 13 4.0 236 74.0 Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 11 of 16 mainly 5 km rural road repaired, reconstruction 12 problem. On the other hand, 26.9% of respondents tube well, raised 94 house plinths, setting 40 new la- think that officials are not sincere to announce the trines, cleaned 5 ponds, and countless medical information and 38.5% think that equipment (Cyr- support. ene, Radio, etc.) are not sufficient to announce the disaster-related information in time. Findings of the Problem and experience of the affected people Table 8 illustrate that most of the respondents get In the flood-prone zone particularly in the char land of disaster-related information in time without facing Bangladesh, almost every year most of the people face any problem and it also shows the organizational several types of problems caused by the flood disaster capability for the dissemination of the information. and gather bitter experience. The poor and vulnerable And at the same time, the paucity of equipment and people (Affected People) face several types of problems the insincerity of the officials are also seen as the to get services from the service providers. With some se- barriers for the affected people to receive disaster- vere problems, the disaster affected people in the study related information. area gather several types of experiences concerning get- During the disaster period, taking shelter in the shelter ting information, taking shelter in the shelter center dur- center is very essential for saving the lives of the affected ing the disaster and after the disaster, receiving people who are vulnerable or risky positions in the emergency relief, medical facilities, monetary help, etc. flood-prone zone of the country. Evacuation and giving shelter are very important to the affected people and ser- Problems of the affected people vice providers to save the lives, but both the affected Problems of the affected people have been discussed on people and service providers face some problems regard- preparedness and emergency response including some ing taking shelter in the shelter center. The Fig. 7 illus- sub-heads. The types of problems faced after the flood trates the problems faced by the affected people in 2017 by the affected people to get services from the regarding shelter in the shelter center during the disaster organizations have been discussed. Almost in all steps, period. the 2017 flood-affected people faced several types of From the Fig. 5, it can be seen that most of the re- problems that need to be discussed on the following spondents (53.9%) faced problems regarding shelter in heads to reveal the problems of affected people. the shelter center where 47.1% of respondents did not face any problem regarding this. Among the respon- During preparedness Information is very much signifi- dents who faced problems out of them 23.8, 18, 16.3, cant for the disaster affected people to save the lives and 32, and 9.9% faced problems due to long-distance, assets from the flood disaster when the flood-hit. By get- weak shelter centers, lack of information, homesick- ting disaster-related information properly, everybody can ness and taking initiatives lately respectively. Findings get enough time to go to the shelter center or safe side of the Fig. 5 show that most of the respondents and can save their valuable goods. The Table 8 shows (53.9%) faced problem regarding taking shelter in the that the problems regarding receiving information. From shelter center during the disaster and among them a the table, it is seen that among the respondents, 40.8% significant number of the respondents (23.8 & 32%) faced problems to get disaster-related information, and did not go to the shelter center due to long-distance 59.2% did not face any type of problem to get information. and homesickness. Again, among the respondents who faced problems (130) to get information, out of them 13.1% think For the period of rescue and relief In the flood-prone that lack of coordination is the main problem for zone of Bangladesh when flood disaster hit, the rescue not getting information whereas according to 21.5% program gets the highest priority to the organizations. of respondents, taking initiatives lately is the main With the organizations, the local people also help to Table 8 Problems regarding receiving information Categories Variable f N % Total % Status of facing problem Yes 130 319 40.8 100 No 189 59.2 Types of problems Lack of Coordination 17 130 13.1 100 Taking Initiatives Lately 28 21.5 Insincerity of Officials 35 26.9 Lack of Equipment (Cyrene, Radio etc.) 50 38.5 Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 12 of 16 Fig. 5 Problems in taking shelter in Shelter Center. Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 rescue the victims. According to the respondents, there period after the 2017 flood. The Table 10 shows the are some barriers to the rescue operation. The Table 8 main obstacle to get relief according to the respondents. demonstrates the main obstacle of the rescue program 11.6% of respondents have viewed that wastage of time in the study area during the devastating flood in 2017. is the main obstacle to get relief and 16.6% have argued Among the respondents from the beneficiary, 16.3% that communication is the main obstacle. have pointed out that lack of logistic support is the main The highest numbers of the respondents (27.9%) have barrier to the rescue program. 44.2% have viewed that opined that insufficiency is the main obstacle to get re- under developed communication system is another lief. Standing a lot of time, when the affected people do problem, because the study villages are basically char (is- not get the minimum desired amount, they become land) which is entirely disconnected from the mainland. shocked very much. According to 21.0%, 14.4%, and For this reason, there is no convenient direct way to 8.5% of respondents, political influence, nepotism, and communicate with the mainland. In the normal period corruption are the main obstacle to get relief, respect- like the dry season, people are used to communicating ively. According to the above data, only 21.0% respon- with the mainland by walking, and for carrying heavy dents have viewed that political influence was the main goods using horse carriage. During the high flood like barrier to get relief in the emergency period after the 2017, the means of transportation worsened automatic- flood in 2017, but the observation shows that political ally, and the infrastructure couldn’t able to support it influence were the main obstacles to the most of the af- due to the high floodwater stream as well as riverbank fected people in the study area at present. erosion. Therefore, the service provider could not exe- There are some influential persons in society who cute rescue program properly. 26.6% of beneficiaries have enough influence on society. They also have have argued that lack of suitable vehicle is the main bar- enough capacity to exercise power to control society rier and the rest of 12.9% have opined that lack of positively. If the influential persons try to influence trained manpower is the main barrier. From the Table 9, the wellbeing of the society, they can do that, but for according to the highest portion of the respondents, the self-interest sometimes they become part of unfair under developed communication system is the main means. problem considering rescue program. One of the KII (Key Informant Interviews) also has argued in favor of Table 9 Main barrier of rescue program under developed communication systems. He has opined Main barrier of rescue program Frequency % that most of the rural area of flood-prone/Char zone are Lack of logistic support 52 16.3 underdeveloped and condition of roads are not very Under developed communication system 141 44.2 good, in addition, most of them are kutcha (muddy) as Lack of suitable vehicle 85 26.6 well as water surrounded. Lack of trained manpower 41 12.9 Providing adequate food, water and medication are Total 319 100.0 very important to support the affected people, but there were some obstacles to get relief in the emergency Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 13 of 16 Table 10 Distribution of the respondents by the obstacle to role respectively. It is significant that according to most get relief of the respondents, the government organizations could Main obstacle to get relief Frequency % not play the expected role regarding preparedness. On the other hand, people’s perception was more posi- Wastage of time 37 11.6 tive to non-government organizations than government Communication 53 16.6 organizations. 15.8% of respondents think that NGOs Insufficiency 89 27.9 played a very good role where 31.0, 32.0, 13.7, and 7.5% Political influence 67 21.0 believe that non-government organizations played good, Nepotism 46 14.4 average, bad and very bad role respectively for prepared- Corruption 27 8.5 ness. Figure 6 shows that according to the highest num- ber of respondents, the non-government organizations Total 319 100.0 could play an expected role regarding preparedness. Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 Experience regarding relief Table 11 shows the responsible person for im- Sufficient relief materials help to restore the condition of proper relief distribution in the study area. Accord- affected people after any natural disaster. The govern- ing to 10.0% and 21.6% of respondents, rural elite ment and non-government organizations try to provide and local people’s representatives are responsible sufficient relief materials overcoming the limitations in parsons for improper relief distribution where about time of need. The following table describes the opinion one-third of the respondents (34.2%) have viewed of the affected people regarding the sufficiency of relief that local political leader is the responsible person. material obtained from GOs and NGOs. On the other hand, about one-fifth of the respon- Among the total respondents, only 5.6% think that re- dents (20.1%) have argued that subordinate of LPR lief material provided by GOs was very sufficient & LPL is responsible for improper relief distribution whereas 23.8% believe that relief material provided by and according to 14.1% of respondents; the office NGOs was very sufficient. Again, 14.1% believe that re- staff is responsible for improper relief distribution. lief material provided by GOs was sufficient whereas Findings of the above Table 11 show that local polit- 26.4% think that relief material provided by NGOs was ical leader (34.2%) and local people’s representatives sufficient. The highest number of respondents (32%, (21.6%) are responsible for improper relief distribu- 102) thinks that relief material provided by GOs was tion but considering the field observation and KII very insufficient whereas only 5.6% of respondents be- (Key Informant Interviews) opinion, it can be said lieve that relief material provided by NGOs was very in- that local political leaders are mainly responsible for sufficient. From the Fig. 7, it has been revealed that improper relief distribution. NGOs provided enough relief material to the flood in 2017 affected people than GOs. Experiences of the flood affected people From a formal and informal interview with the flood Organizational initiatives for preparedness disaster-affected people in the study area, it has been On the basis of overall performance regarding initiatives found that satisfaction depends on obtaining relief, qual- for preparedness, only 6.3% of respondents think that ity and quantity of relief, time of receiving relief, etc. government organizations played a very good role and Most of the affected people received relief (cash, food according to the rest 14.1, 34.8, 34.1 and 10.7%, govern- and non-food item) from GOs or NGOs or both GOs ment organizations play good, average, bad and very bad and NGOs. The Fig. 8 shows the level of satisfaction of the respondents for getting relief material from govern- Table 11 Responsible person for improper relief distribution ment and non-government organizations. Responsible person Frequency % The Fig. 8 shows that regarding GOs relief, only 6.6% Rural elite 32 10.0 of respondents were very satisfied and 16.3% of respon- Local people’s representatives 69 21.6 dents were satisfied whereas regarding NGOs’ relief, 29.5% were satisfied and 24.7% of respondents were very Local political leader 109 34.2 a b satisfied in terms of quality, quantity and time of receiv- Subordinate of LPR & LPL 64 20.1 ing emergency relief. Again, regarding GOs relief, 28.8% Office stuff 45 14.1 of respondents were unsatisfied, and 30.2% of respon- Total 319 100.0 dents were very unsatisfied, but regarding NGOs, 12.2% Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 of respondents were unsatisfied, and only 4.7% of re- Local People Representatives spondents were very unsatisfied. So, based on the Local Political leader Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 14 of 16 Fig. 6 Experiences regarding organizational initiatives for preparedness. Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 respondent’s perception, it can be said that the level of NGOs organized training programs very successfully. satisfaction towards NGOs was higher than the GOs. Organizations were very prompt for rescue and relief programs. Just after the occurrence of the 2017 flood, Conclusion and recommendations GOs played a very efficient and expected role providing Flood disaster is a frequent phenomenon in the study CI Sheet and monetary help, whereas; NGOs played a villages, for this reason, the dwellers depend on the aids very applicable and expected role providing food relief, of government organizations and non-government orga- medical and IGA facilities, etc. In respect to restoration nizations to cope with the overwhelming situation since program, selected NGOs performed an extraordinary job they lose almost everything. As such the GOs and NGOs which attracted the people’s concentration. Besides, provided their services as part of preparedness and while receiving service about rehabilitation facilities, the emergency response during the 2017 flood period. Both disaster affected people faced several problems and faced the GOs and NGOs showed their outstanding perform- bitter experience. Because of corruption, nepotism, im- ance with respect to disseminate information. Most of proper assessment, and difficult procedure, affected the respondents (93.7%) received information before the people did not get rehabilitation facilities properly. On disaster, and the main way of getting information was the basis of the objectives and found results of the study announcing through loud speakers by GOs and NGOs. and the overall situation of the role of organizations re- Also, they played a very effective role regarding initia- garding preparedness and emergency response of the tives for preparedness. GOs arranged preparatory meet- flood disaster-affected people, the researcher has pro- ings and prepare shelter centers very effectively, whereas posed some subjects to address this study. Fig. 7 Experience regarding sufficiency of obtained relief. Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December 2018-April, 2019 Hossain Geoenvironmental Disasters (2020) 7:33 Page 15 of 16 Fig. 8 People’s satisfaction regarding relief from organizations. Source: Field Survey June–September, 2018, December, 2018-April, 2019 I Along with public participation, organizations people for sustainable development. It lasts for years should work collectively in the flood crisis period for major flood disasters, so organizations should be because the present study found out that the lack more emphasized with respect to financial assist- of local people participation as a main gap in flood ance, housing reconstruction, IGA facilities and new management activities. work opportunities beyond localities. In which, fi- J NGOs should provide more financial help as relief nancial help is very helpful and important for the avoiding difficult procedures for the affected overall development of the disaster affected people. people. On the other hand, Organizations should The government and non-government organiza- make available financial help as loan for regaining tions should provide financial help for various pur- the IGA facilities within a short possible of time as poses with several terms and conditions. Affected most of the char land people lose their IGA people who are very much sincere and conscious; facilities which are very much related to the they can change their social position using obtained livelihood of the affected people. financial help efficiently. Because all types of K In addition, existing flood shelter centers can serve income-generating activities (IGA) are basically a small number of the population in the study dependent on financial help. area. Therefore, setting up of multipurpose flood Acknowledgments shelters is essential, and at least two storied new I would like to express my sincere appreciation to my study respondents schools should be built on flood-free highlands so who were patient interviewees and provided necessary information for this that villagers are less vulnerable to impending study. I shall never forget their sincere cooperation and support. floods. Moreover, training and awareness pro- Author’s contributions grams on flood preparedness should be more con- Corresponding author BH carried out the study, performed the statistical centrated and steadier. analysis, wrote the protocol, and wrote the draft of the manuscript. The L For easy and smooth relief distribution, all kinds of author(s) read and approved the final manuscript. complicated processes from the center to the Funding grassroots level should be avoided. Therefore, Not applicable’ for that section. corruption, nepotism and political and local interventions should be eliminated to ensure equal Availability of data and materials and fair distribution of relief goods among flood The data sets used and analyzed during the current study are available from the corresponding author on request. disaster victims, and the organizations may also increase monitoring and supervision to ensure Competing interests relief and equitable rehabilitation. The author declares that there is no competing of interest. M Along with short-term rehabilitation, organizations Received: 2 March 2020 Accepted: 13 October 2020 should give concern about long-term rehabilitation. Because of this path can give prosperity to cope with the adverse situation. 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Published: Dec 1, 2020

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