The Indian Ocean Tsunami on 26 December 2004 killed 30 people, left hundreds homeless and damaged 20% of the coastal areas on Nias. The earthquake on 28 March 2005 killed more than 800 people, injured thousands and damaged the infrastructure on Nias to a large extent. Almost 80% of the buildings damaged were in two cities Gunung Sitoli and Teluk Dalam.
Within the framework of the UNDP Aceh-Nias Emergency Response and Transitional Recovery (ERTR) Program, a UN Joint Programming initiative was launched on Teluk Dalam, South Nias in September 2006, combining efforts of UNDP, UNESCO, UN-HABITAT and ILO.
Under the UN Joint Programming initiative, UNESCO’s Coastal Regions and Small Island Unit (CSI) committed to strengthen human resources in disaster risk reduction. In close collaboration with the Indonesian Society of Disaster Management (MPBI) and Elsaka, a local NGO active in the Province of North Sumatra, CSI claimed to strengthen the disaster preparedness of schools and communities in South Nias. The project activites were focusing on three pilot project sites, namely Lagundri, Bawomataluo and Teluk Dalam.