Mr. Amjad Abbashar,
Chief of the UNDRR Africa Regional Office opened the webinar noting that,
“UNDRR advocates for the empowerment of local governments and communities,
as they are often the first line of response to disasters”.
Through the Making Cities Resilient Campaign,
UNDRR has been able to support the implementation of the Sendai Framework
in coherence with the development agenda in collaboration with partners.
“As we look beyond 2020,
we seek to strengthen these partnerships to accelerate efforts towards
the achievement of the 2030 targets”, Mr. Abbashar said.
In addition, the Sendai Framework calls for a comprehensive approach
to disaster risk reduction that is based on an all of society engagement
that acknowledges the role of different stakeholders in the agenda.
Mr. Bijay Kumar, the Executive Director for GNDR mentioned
that development cannot be achieved if communities resilience
is not placed at the top of the political agenda.
“They must be enabled to participate, influence and
take decisions on risk-informed development policies and practices.
The COVID-19 pandemic shows the need for strong community engagement
that is supported by communications systems,
which is a core part of the Community-Based Disaster Risk
Management (CBDRM) practices.
Mr. Emmanuel Seck, from EDNA-Energie and member of the
GNDR Global Board underlined that CBDRM can increase
awareness and community engagement.
Community-based approaches will reinforce communities
ownership and foster coherent development of policies
and plans at all levels. This should be combined with
institutional mechanisms and tools to support communities
with risk prevention policies and strategies that include health dimension.
Mr. Buh Gaston, explained the GNDR Views from the
Frontline (VFL) tool. VFL provides a complementary
bottom-up perspectives on progress at the impact/outcome
level to UNDRR’s top-down Sendai Monitoring Tool.
In Cameroon, VFL enhanced the working relationship between NGOs,
CSOs, local governments and other DRR stakeholders
to identify DRR indicators and risks. It also provided
an opportunity to raise awareness to at risk communities.
The VFL can be a vehicle to sensitize communities to COVID-19.
There is a need to identify and understand the local context before designing projects.
Ms. Edna Kaptoyo, from the Pastoral Communities
Empowerment Programme (PACEP) shared some best practices
and opportunities to integrate climate change adaptation (CCA) and DRR.
Some examples she gave were eco cultural mapping
in Kenya where communities use their indigenous knowledge
to reduce forest degradation and environmental risk,
Community-based monitoring and information systems (CBMIS)
initiatives to monitor their community’s well-being,
state of their territories and natural resources
(including on the health of biodiversity, and climate change impacts).
Among the recommendations that were presented to advance
community interventions for resilience were the need for
proper participatory governance, building financial and
technical capacities and strengthening partnerships
between governments, local actors and international
institutions. Calls were made for central governments
to empower local governments for better engagement with
the community, and to promote a coherent approach towards
resilience. Local actors must be at the heart of data collection,
triggers, and recipients of alert messages
at the local level for effective early action strategies.
Being inclusive is critical to ensuring that no one is left behind.
Participants appreciated the platform to share lessons
and experiences and encouraged partners to promote these even more,
especially during the pandemic where COVID-19 solutions are sought.
The Sendai Framework calls on governments and communities
to strengthen the design and implementation of inclusive
policies and social safety-net mechanisms
that are integrated with livelihood enhancement programs,
including access to basic health-care services.
Target ‘e’ of the Framework aims at a substantial increase
in national and local strategies by 2020.
In Africa, 25 countries currently have national DRR strategies in place.
The recorded webinar can be found here.
United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction - Regional Office for Africa
Global Network of Civil Society Organisations for Disaster Reduction
Provided by the IKCEST Disaster Risk Reduction Knowledge Service System