U.S. Assistance Strengthens Georgia’s Response to COVID-19

With the support of the USAID Zrda Activity, its partner organization RDFG DRR Center procured hospital field tents for the Emergency Management Service (EMS) of Georgia.

Tbilisi – May 14, 2020 – USAID/Georgia Mission Director Peter Wiebler joined Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs Ioseb Chelidze and Head of Georgia’s Emergency Situations Management Service Temur Mghebrishvili to hand over field hospital tents provided to Georgia by the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The field hospital tents will enhance the preparedness and response capabilities of the Emergency Management Service (EMS) of Georgia and support the safety of communities across Georgia during the COVID-19 pandemic. The handover took place at the Emergency management Service Office.

In response to a request from the Emergency Management Service (EMS) of Georgia, the USAID Zrda Activity, through its partner the Association Rural Development for Future Georgia (RDFG), rapidly sourced and procured hospital field tents with a total area of more than 45 m² and heated technical field tents with a total area of more than 20 m². The tents will be deployed to quarantine zones across Georgia and after the crisis, will be handed over to the CBRN (Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear) Incidents Response Division (Rapid response team) of the Fire and Rescue Forces Department at the Emergency Management Service of Georgia. Provision of the tents is part of a larger effort by the U.S. Government to support Georgia’s immediate COVID-19 response and help build its emergency preparedness capacity through upgraded equipment and enhanced training.

“USAID thanks to the generosity of the American people has been able to support the Government of Georgia’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic here in the country. Here with our partners at the Ministry of Internal Affairs, EMS we handed over 2 tents that USAID and our partners procured to help EMS respond to cope and ultimately control the spread of the virus in Georgia. It’s obviously important for Georgia’s immediate response to keep its citizens healthy and safe, but also it’s critical to get the country back on a path to economic growth and stability that USAID and US Government have been supporting Georgia so long to continue”, USAID/Georgia Mission Director Peter Wiebler said on May 14.

“On behalf of the Government of Georgia I would like to take this opportunity and once again thank the U.S. Government for its continuous support to Georgia in the face of the COVID-19 outbreak. Handing over these field hospital tents is one more signal of the strength of the Georgian-American partnership. We hope this assistance will further enhance preparedness and response capabilities of the EMS as well as safety of communities across the country”, Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs, Ioseb Chelidze said on Thursday.

“We are very happy to be here to hand over the field hospital tents procured to our program and donated to the EMS as a part of US government’s support to Georgia’s response to COVID-19 emergency. We work with our partner Association Rural Development for Future Georgia which is working closely to the EMS not just in this emergency situation but on capacity building in target municipalities to develop emergency management plans”, – Brian King, Chief of party, USAID Zrda Activity.

“In the framework of the USAID Zrda Activity, RDFG implements disaster risk reduction component, aiming to increase the capacity of local municipalities to develop emergency management plans. Within the current crisis, as a rapid response to the Emergency Management Service request, the project’s resources intended for field trainings in peacetime, were used to provide the EMS with these tents. Our team managed to procure this product in a very short period and transport it to Georgia. We are glad to be able to meet such an urgent need so effectively in this situation” – Vano Grigolashvili, chairman of the RDFG DRR Center.

To date, the U.S. Government, through USAID and other agencies, has deployed a range of resources to contain and prevent the spread of COVID-19 globally. In Georgia, the U.S. Government has responded rapidly to the pandemic by partnering with Georgia’s Government, civil society, and private sector to prevent the spread of disease, support essential public services, and help prepare for the economic recovery from the pandemic.

RDFG works through its Disaster Risk Disaster (DRR) Center to enhance the resilience of communities to disasters caused by manmade and natural hazards and promote the culture of prevention through provision of coordinated and systematic awareness-raising, capacity building and technical assistance in the field of DRR to communities, state and non-state actors at national and local levels. In the framework of the USAID Zrda Activity in Georgia, the mentioned center implements disaster risk reduction activities in project target municipalities.

Vano Grigolashvili – Chairman, RDFG; vgrigolashvili@rdfg.ge
Nina Kopaleishvili – Communications Officer, RDFG; nkopaleishvili@rdfg.ge