The immediate aftermath of a disaster is a critical period of time when the government and non-governmental organisations need to make key decisions on how to best support the affected populations. However, during that brief period, limited comprehensive information on the actual needs is available to support the identification of strategic priorities. Therefore, there is an immediate need for an initial and reliable assessment of affected population's needs. This manual describes how the Rapid Needs Assessment (RNA) process is organized, activated and managed during disasters. It illustrates how assessment information is compiled and disseminated.
This RNA document has been written to support district and divisional disaster relief services officers and other stakeholders involved in Divisional Secretariat and Grama Niladari level to gather and share information in the initial stages of a response. Proper integration of the procedures of different agencies is critical to ensure resources are available and directed in the most effective and efficient way for doing the needs assessment.
This manual has been developed by the National Disaster Relief Services Centre under Sri Lanka Preparedness Partnership in collaboration with Asian Disaster Preparedness Center and Janathakshan.