04 May 2015
Hundreds of people from five different communities in Pakistan have come together to mitigate against and prepare for disaster, under a RedR initiative.
Through the Community-Based Disaster Risk Management (CBDRM) project, we trained, organised and equipped 125 men and 125 women from five flood-prone communities in the Jaffarabad district, south-west Pakistan, to better cope with emergencies, as well as connecting them so they can help one another as well as themselves when disaster strikes.
Project leader Dr Muhammad Ayaz Khan, said: "The project is much needed due to this region’s vulnerability to disasters such as floods. Community empowerment in terms of building community capacity and awareness about disaster preparedness was the main essence of the project."
The participants were chosen because of their communities’ vulnerability to floods, lack of capacity to cope with disaster, and because of their remote position.
Each of the five communities had also suffered in the devastating floods of 2010 and 2012, which caused widespread damage, illness and death. The communities are still reliant on outside assistance, so the project was designed to help them learn skills and build links which would help them respond to future emergencies.
The participants worked to identify hazards, community vulnerability, and lessons learned from previous disasters, all of which helped them develop and deliver a disaster risk management strategy which they and their communities can follow.
With assistance from organisations including the UNDP, Provincial Disaster Management Authority of Baluchistan and District Disaster Management, they also set up village disaster committees, developed family disaster plans, evacuation plans and set out how to communicate early warnings to the most vulnerable.
They also took First Aid and search and rescue training, and were tested in each during simulations.