Friday, July 13, 2012

A UN Disaster Reduction Brochure And Idea That Makes Sense

It is waaay better to prevent a disaster in the first place or cut down the damage before it happens than to pick up the pieces afterwards.

Disaster funding is not being used for maximum efficiency. People get teary-eyed and reach for their wallets when they see a lot of disaster victims bleeding and looking dazed or swimming for their lives. We need to think more about what we do about disasters. Prevention is a better investment even if the pictures and video are not as exciting.

Here goes: 

"GENEVA, 20 March 2012 - The UN Secretary-General's Special Representative for Disaster Risk Reduction, Margareta Wahlström, today launched a new report by Development Initiatives which highlights major discrepancies in the way that donors allocate funding for disaster risk reduction despite economic losses of over one trillion dollars from...." (The computer ate this part of the quote and I'm not wrestling with it more. You can look it up yourself if you want to.)

"Contact us in Geneva

Postal Address
Palais des Nations
Geneva, Switzerland
Contact Details
Phone: +41 229178907-8
Fax: +41 229178964
Email: isdr(at)

UNISDR is the secretariat of the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction. It was created in December 1999 and is part of the UN Secretariat with the purpose of ensuring the implementation of the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction.

Connect and convince to save lives and reduce disaster impacts

This brochure introduces the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR) as a strategic framework adopted by the United Nations Member States in 2000 intending to guide and coordinate the efforts of a wide range of partners to achieve a substantive reduction in disaster losses. Its aim is to build resilient nations and communities as an essential condition for sustainable development.

The brochure also presents the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR), secretariat of the ISDR system, which serves as focal point for the implementation of the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA) - a ten year plan of action adopted by 168 governments to protect lives and livelihoods against disasters.

 Part of Brochure:
What do we do?
We coordinate international efforts in disaster risk reduction and guide, monitor as well as report regularly on
progress of the implementation of the Hyogo Framework for Action. We organize a biennial Global Platform on disaster risk reduction with leaders and decision makers to advance risk reduction policies and support the establishment of regional, national and thematic platforms.

We campaign and advocate
to create global awareness of disaster risk reduction benefits and empower people to reduce their vulnerability to hazards. Our current campaigns focus on safer schools and hospitals as well as resilient cities. 

We encourage for greater investments in risk reduction actions to protect people’s lives and assets including
climate change adaptation, more education on DRR and increased participation of men and women
in the decision making process.

We inform and connect people by providing practical services and tools such as the risk reduction website PreventionWeb, publications on good practices, country profiles and the Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction which is an authoritative analysis of global disaster risks and trends.

The HFA sets out five priorities for action:
• Make disaster risk reduction a priority
• Know the risks and take action
• Build understanding and awareness
• Reduce risks
• Be prepared and ready to act

This is what they say citizens should do:
A Citizen: learn about your risks, ask for resilient communities, prevent risk and disasters – make informed  choices.
This is what they say A Civil Society Organization or Non Governmental Organization should do: 
Use your close connection to communities to raise awareness about the good sense of disaster risk reduction in everyday life."

I am trying to do the last with my blog. 

We cannot prevent all disasters, but we can prevent some of them or make them less harmful. We should do this more. I hope you will be part of this, and thereby keep yourself safer.

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