3.1 Mainstreaming disaster risk reduction

DRR should be mainstreamed into all of CARE’s programmes to ensure that we are working to reduce disaster risks before any crisis. This requires a wide range of activities as outlined in the draft policy in section 6.1. As a minimum, COs should ensure the following:

Guidance on how to conduct emergency preparedness planning is available at Annex 34.2 CARE International emergency preparedness planning (EPP) guidelines. CARE’s EPP guidelines are based on DRR principles and involve situational or hazard analysis, and capacity and vulnerabilities analysis. Based on this analysis, the EPP should identify feasible measures to mitigate, prepare and respond to disasters. The EPP guidelines provide the following questions to plan mitigation and preparedness measures:

 Mitigation and preparedness measures checklist

Mitigation measures-key questions to consider

  • What can be done to diminish consequences in terms of mitigation?
  • What are the underlying causes of vulnerability that contribute to the probability of the risk unfolding? (economic, social, environmental and/or physical)
  • Can CARE advocate for change before an event? Is disaster risk reduction part of national development agendas? Is CARE or its partners in a position to advocate such an effort?
  • What current CARE programmes work, or could work, towards mitigating the risk in question? Do CARE programmes integrate disaster risk reduction thinking?
  • What can be done with government, partners and communities to mitigate risk? How is CARE engaging communities and local authorities to analyse their risks?
  • What type of analysis can contribute to identify ways to lower the effect of the risk situation?

Preparedness measures-key questions to consider

  • What can be done to prepare the community for a disaster?
  • What are traditional community contingencies?
  • What are the official emergency preparedness and response mechanisms and how can these support community preparedness?
  • What media can be used to warn communities of an impending event?
  • What role could advocacy play in reducing consequences?
  • What preparation does CARE need particularly in functional areas? (human resources, logistics, communications, etc.)

Disasters can destroy the positive achievements of years of CARE’s development programmes. All of CARE’s programmes should mainstream DRR by examining existing risks and how a disaster would impact on the partner community, and the project’s objectives and achievements. CARE’s programmes can then identify and build in measures that strengthen capacities and reduce vulnerabilities, reduce the exposure of communities and project assets to hazards, and prepare partner communities and project teams for how they will deal with a disaster if it occurs.

In areas of particularly high risk to disasters, COs should pursue explicit community-based disaster risk reduction programmes, and build in disaster risk reduction efforts in their relationship and collaboration with these communities. Emergencies usually present opportunities for funding, while affected communities are more receptive to disaster risk reduction actions. COs should be quick in taking advantage of these opportunities. CARE has increasing global experience in Community-based DRR. There is a wide range of tools and guidelines available to support COs with this kind of programming (see sections 8 and 9).