09 March 2009

We want to make sure the voices of survivors, their families and communities will be heard at the Second Review Conference of the Mine Ban Treaty to be held in Cartagena, Colombia, from 30 November to 4 December 2009. The ICBL and Handicap International-Belgium are preparing a progress review, Voices from the Ground, using the experiences and knowledge of survivors to document the achievements and impact of 10 years of victim assistance but also the challenges that hamper further progress. It aims at helping decision-makers and implementers to improve victim assistance efforts and to fill the gaps.

Who can answer the questionnaire?

The questionnaire is aimed at mine survivors from throughout the world. Answers will be collected thanks to close cooperation with organizations working with survivors.

What do we want you to do?

We would like you to help us by taking some time to answer questions on the situation of landmine and explosive remnants of war (ERW) survivors in your area or country. Handicap International-Belgium and the International Campaign to Ban Landmines (ICBL) want to make sure that the opinions and experiences of survivors, their families and communities with victim assistance are heard by governments and organizations providing victim assistance. Like this, we can assess the progress that States Parties to the Mine Ban Treaty have made and remind them of their legal obligations and commitments under the Mine Ban Treaty.

What is this questionnaire about?

This questionnaire is about what happened in the lives of survivors in the last five years (2005-2009) and what needs to happen now. It is also a unique opportunity to say what can be improved in the field of victim assistance in the next five years.

Why are your responses most important to us?

You have personal knowledge of victim assistance. You have experienced the reality on the ground and you know current the situation, the successes and the problems. We need your expertise because your government will decide what their future actions on victim assistance will be during a conference in November 2009 in Cartagena, Colombia. Your participation in this questionnaire is vital to make sure that we all can influence international plans for victim assistance… and make them better. Both ICBL and Handicap International-Belgium have proven in the past that their publications do have a positive influence which can make the lives of survivors better.

How will your information be used?

This questionnaire will be used in a document called the Progress Review on Victim Assistance-Voices from the Ground made by Handicap International-Belgium. This document will report on the experiences and knowledge of survivors, their families and communities by looking at the achievements and challenges of the past five years of victim assistance. Your answers are the most important part of the document because they will help decision-makers improve victim assistance. It will also remind them of their obligations under the Mine Ban Treaty. This document will be published all over the world in September 2009 and it will be made available to you, if you wish.

How long will it take?

Individual: If filled in directly by the person answering questions the questionnaire will take about 40 minutes to an hour to complete. Interview: If filled in through an interview the questionnaire will take about 1.5 hour to complete.

Is this information confidential?

Your answers are confidential and they will not be given to anyone. Your name or personal details will not be used in reporting or shared with other organizations.

Where can I find the questionnaire?

As of May 2009, the surveying period has ended and questionnaires are no longer available for filling.

Where do I send the filled questionnaires?

Please return completed questionnaires before 30 April 2009 by post, fax, or email to: Katleen Maes, Research Coordinator, Email: katleen.maes@handicap.be, with a copy to katleen@icbl.org, Fax: + 32 2 230 60 30 / Telephone: + 32 2 233 01 05, Address:Handicap International - Belgium, Rue de Spastraat 67, 1000 Brussels, Belgium. Katleen will be the person analyzing your information, so she needs to receive all the questionnaires, but to make sure that we receive your information, you can also send a copy to: Firoz Ali Alizada, ICBL Treaty Implementation Officer, Email: firoz@icbl.org, Fax: +41 22 920 01 15 / Telephone: +41 22 920 03 20, Address: ICBL, 9 rue de Cornavin, CH-1201 Geneva, Switzerland

What to do if you need help?

If something is not clear or you would like advice on how to complete the questionnaire, please contact Katleen Maes or Firoz Ali Alizada.

Thank You!