International Committee of the Red Cross

Rebuilding the Island of Barbuda: Building Better, Building Stronger

Disasters and emergency management

Rebuilding Barbuda’s economy and physical infrastructures while strengthening its resilience to future disasters.

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Project Locations

Lead Organization

International Committee of the Red Cross

St Johns, Antigua and Barbuda, Antigua and Barbuda

https://www.ifrc.org/en/what-we-do/where-we-work/americas/antigua-and-barbuda-red-cross-society

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Project Summary

The Island of Barbuda was destroyed (2017) by Hurricane Irma (Category 5 SSHWS). For the first time in 300 years the entire population was evacuated. The devastation on Barbuda was severe. Irma damaged or destroyed 95% of Barbuda’s physical assets -including residential, utility and public/community infrastructures. The productive sector, primarily agriculture and fisheries, halted after the evacuated. The project solution will repair and rebuild damaged and destroyed residential and public/community infrastructures and is expected to solve this problem, for the entire Island of Barbuda, within five years. The proposed economic recovery activities will help to restart and make functional the economy so persons can obtain jobs and restart their businesses. The building of resilience for future hazards is critical to enhance Barbuda’s ability to respond to future hazards and reduce potential loss. The IFRC will work through its member National society, Antigua and Barbuda Red Cross to implement this project.

Problem Statement

On September 6, 2017 the Island of Barbuda, which covers 62 square miles, was destroyed by Hurricane Irma (Category 5 SSHWS). For the first time in 300 years the entire population, of 1,800 residents, was evacuated to its sister Island of Antigua which suffered minor damage. The devastation on Barbuda was severe. Irma damaged or destroyed 95% of Barbuda’s physical assets, including residential and other properties such as its hospital, schools and sole bank. The destruction rendered the island's sole airport and much of its critical infrastructure inoperative—including water, electricity and telecommunication services. In addition to damaging its social sector the productive sector, primarily agriculture and fisheries, was extensively affected. Barbuda urgently need to complete the rebuilding process. There is a need to rebuild, repair and retrofit Barbuda’s physical infrastructure; recover its economy – agriculture and fisheries and strengthen its resilience to future hazards. Due to the complexity of the problem and depth of the devastation the rebuilding solution is multifaceted and consist of various components which are critical to attaining an overall successful and functional solution. The project teams will work together and simultaneously on different components of the solution to efficiently and effectively solve the problem. The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies will work through its member National society, Antigua and Barbuda Red Cross, and in close collaboration with the people of Barbuda, the Government of Antigua and Barbuda and stakeholders to effectively and efficiently implement this project.

Solution Overview

The project solution consists of three components and will focus on the activities mentioned below aimed at making substantial difference in resolving the current problem. The solution components and activities are:(a)Rebuilding and repairing Barbuda’s Infrastructure This will include the following: Expansion and retrofitting of desalination plant. Construction and equipping of the Health Center. Repair and rebuilding of residential infrastructure. Power plant repair, retrofitting and new distribution system. Hurricane shelter construction. Community Center retrofitting and library addition. Road network repairs. School repairs and playground development.(b)Economic Recovery – Agriculture and Fisheries The economic recovery will focus on these areas: Fishery and fisheries building restoration. Recovery of crop and poultry farming. Secondary school agriculture programme improved.(c)Building Resilience for Future Disaster Multi-hazard mapping, vulnerability inventory and risk assessment(d)Project Administration Administrative support. Monitoring, evaluation and learning. Contingency The project solution will repair and rebuild damaged and destroyed residential and public/community infrastructures and is expected to solve the residential and public infrastructure problem for the entire Island of Barbuda within the five year period. The proposed economic recovery activities will help to restart and make functional the economy so persons can obtain jobs and restart their business/enterprises. The building of resilience for future hazards is critical to enhance Barbuda’s ability to respond to future hazards and reduce potential loss. The impact will be deep and intense on a small population - entire population of Barbuda (1,600) - and will include adults, children, young persons and persons with disabilities.

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