10.3 How to involve disaster-affected people in the assessment (adapted from The good enough guide, Tool 3)

Disaster-affected men and women should be actively involved in every part of the response, including the assessment phase.

Before assessment

  • Determine and clearly state the objectives of the assessment.
  • If you can, inform the local community and local authorities well before the assessment takes place.
  • Include both women and men in the project team.
  • Make a list of vulnerable groups to be identified during the assessment.
  • Check what other NGOs have done in that community and get a copy of their reports.

During assessment

  • Introduce team members and their roles.
  • Explain the time frame for assessment.
  • Invite representatives of local people to participate.
  • Create space for individuals or groups to speak openly.
  • Hold separate discussions and interviews with different groups-for example, local officials, community groups, men, women and local staff.
  • Ask these groups for their opinions on needs and priorities.
  • Inform them about any decisions taken.

Note: If it is not possible to consult all groups within the community at one time, state clearly which groups have been omitted on this occasion and return to meet them as soon as possible. Write up your findings and describe your methodology and its limitations. Use the analysis for future decision-making.