Aapda Mitra

The Scheme for Training of Community Volunteers in Disaster Response (Aapda Mitra)

NDMA has been implementing a central sector scheme namely Aapda Mitra since May 2016 with a focus on training of 6000 community volunteers (200 volunteers per district) in disaster response in selected 30 most flood prone districts of 25 States of India. The scheme is extended upto 31.12.2020.

To know names of States and Districts,

The scheme aims to provide the community volunteers with the skills that they would need to respond to their community’s immediate needs in the aftermath of a disaster thereby enabling them to undertake basic relief and rescue tasks during emergency situations such as floods, flash-floods and urban flooding.

The objectives of the scheme:

  • Development and Standardization of training modules at National Level;
  • Development of Information Knowledge Management System at National level linked to States/UTs;
  • Training institutions to be empanelled by respective States/UTs at the State/UT level;
  • To train 6000 community volunteers in life saving skills of disaster response (flood relief and rescue), coordination, assistance, and provide personal protective equipment and emergency responder kits;
  • To create a Community Emergency Stockpile/Reserve at the district/block level containing essential light search and rescue equipment, medical first aid kits, etc;
  • To disseminate training and education tools developed under the project to more number of flood prone districts in subsequent phases of the scheme.

So far, a total number of 5186 community volunteers have been trained by 23 Project States (Andhra Pradesh – 102, Arunachal Pradesh – 91, Assam – 400, Bihar – 400, Gujarat – 200, Haryana - 100, Himachal Pradesh – 200, Jammu & Kashmir – 200, Karnataka – 200, Kerala – 200, Madhya Pradesh – 150, Maharashtra – 200, Manipur – 200, Meghalaya – 200, Mizoram – 200, Nagaland – 200, Odisha – 400, Sikkim – 172, Tamil Nadu – 200, Tripura – 200, Uttar Pradesh – 371, Uttarakhand – 200 and West Bengal – 400).

Some of the States have reported that the services of these trained community volunteers have been utilized in rescuing the stranded people during floods and cyclones such as Kerala Flood, Kolhapur Flood, Assam Flood, Tripura Flood, Sikkim Flood, and Cyclone Fani etc. The trained volunteers from Kottayam- Kerela, Kolhapur- Maharashtra, Jagatsinghpur- Odisha, Sepahijala- Tripura, Gorakhpur-Uttar Pradesh, Purba Medinipur & South 24 Pgs- West Bangal, Sikkim, Supaul- Bihar and Assam provided/ are providing following services in COVID-19 pandemic under the guidance of District Administrations, which were/is commendable:

  • Distributed ration and monitored temperature.
  • Home delivery of essential items such as food, ration, medicines for women headed households, senior citizens, disabled people.
  • Logistic support in running and monitoring quarantine & isolation centers and homes of suspect cases.
  • Dissemination of information & awareness generation by IEC material, campaigns at public places and at doorsteps to reach the last mile.
  • Preparation & Distribution of Food among the needy like migrants, homeless, in slum clusters & remote rural areas.
  • Conducted an awareness drive to educate rural communities.
  • Volunteers ensured people wear masks and distributed essential items to the community and to migrant labourers.

Based on positive feedbacks and strong recommendations of States/UTs for training of more volunteers in the hazard prone districts of India, NDMA is also planning to upscale the scheme in Pan India to train 100,000 Volunteers in 350 selected highly vulnerable districts prone to flood, cyclone, landslide and earthquake in across the country. This would be of great help for the community. This will also promote a culture of volunteerism in DRR in India.