Group of women in Zimbabwe conducting gulley reclamation
This community in Zimbabwe is taking a proactive approach to climate adaptation by restoring and fortifying the degraded gulley. | Credit: Thomas Nyarugwe

Linking Humanitarian Assistance and Climate: Resources from Climatelinks

By Ariel Schindler

Two of the themes in today’s programming at COP28 are relief and recovery. High exposure to climate and weather events, combined with low coping capacity, degraded natural resources, settlements in marginal lands, and weak governments, can lead to loss of lives, destruction of people’s livelihoods and homes, and adverse impacts on people’s health and socioeconomic well-being. The effects of climate-induced disasters are magnified when disasters are recurrent, preventing a population from fully recovering or reconstituting resources to cope with cascading events.

Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) activities aim to reduce vulnerabilities and exposure to hydrometeorological events while increasing capacities at all levels. Resources such as early warning systems provide timely, accurate, and reliable information that can give decision-makers and the public the lead time needed to take early action. Improved disaster preparedness at all levels of government and communities, combined with early warning systems, can guide communities to take actions that will save lives. As a part of the USAID 2022-2030 Climate Strategy, the Agency will strengthen the coordination of humanitarian, development, and peacebuilding assistance throughout policy and investments to address climate impacts. 

Climatelinks is highlighting some resources that explore how strengthening the resilience of communities vulnerable to climate impacts, while also strengthening the coordination of humanitarian assistance can reduce climate-related risks and enhance climate resilience globally. Here are some resources on Climatelinks to help humanitarian assistance practitioners understand how their work intersects with climate change programming.

Windows of Opportunity for Risk-Informed Humanitarian Assistance: An Anticipatory, Early Action, and Disaster Risk Finance Framework

“Risk-informed” humanitarian approaches can address climate-related risks in disaster settings. This anticipatory, early action, and disaster risk finance framework can help humanitarian donors, practitioners, and partners develop and implement more effective DRR activities.

Advancing Resilience Measurement Consultation Report

The demand for resilience evidence has grown as conflict, COVID-19, and the accelerating impacts of climate change have reversed development gains on a massive scale and pushed hundreds of millions of people into crisis levels of poverty and hunger. This report aimed to identify and affirm core principles and priorities for resilience measurement and evidence. It focuses on four themes that were selected because they represent critical frontier issues in resilience measurement that also have significant, unresolved challenges that must be addressed.

Best Practices from Vanuatu Business Resilience Council (VBRC) in Risk Reduction, Emergency Preparedness, Response and Recovery

VBRC, a business resilience organization located in the Pacific, successfully integrated itself into government and non-government humanitarian processes to play a meaningful role in risk reduction, emergency preparedness, response, and recovery. It serves as an example of how local partners can influence resilience building efforts for greater impact.

Strategic Objective
Adaptation, Integration, Mitigation
Climate Risk Management, Disaster Risk Management, Humanitarian Assistance, Resilience

Ariel Schindler

Ariel Schindler is a Communications and Knowledge Management Specialist on USAID’s Advancing Capacity for the Environment (ACE) contract, supporting Climate in her main role as Climatelinks Community Manager. Ariel has a Master’s in Strategic Communications, with a focus on social impact and advocacy, from American University, and a BA in Environmental Science and Policy from Eckerd College.

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