Presentation: Disaster risk reduction needs to be addressed more holistically by the humanitarian sector

DARA presented the Risk Reduction Index in West Africa at the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) weekly meeting in Geneva , 22 January.

The IASC weekly meeting is organised by the IASC Secretariat to disseminate reports and promote debate on issues relevant to its agenda. IASC members (UN agencies and NGOs) participate on a regular basis in this key forum for the humanitarian community in Geneva. Attendants represented a range of agencies, including UNICEF, MSF, SCHR, UNDP, IASC, WFP, ICRF and many others.

The discussion pointed to the need for greater engagement with risk reduction efforts in the humanitarian sector. In addition to a technical presentation of the RRI methodology and findings from West Africa, it was emphasised that UN agencies need to address DRR in their work from a more integrated perspective and work more closely with national governments in order to do so. In these efforts beneficiaries’ perceptions should also be incorporated. This is a matter of increasing awareness around underlying risk at the national level, while understanding risk and building resilience at the local level.

Further global dissemination of the RRI in West Africa will continue throughout the month of February. In addition, DARA’s RRI work will continue in the coming months with a study of Burkina Faso, as part of an extension of the FOREWARN Initiative.